Governor Ben Ayade of Cross River has mentioned he thinks the embattled journalist (Agba Jalingo) ought to be launched from the jail.
Speaking after a protracted silence on the matter, Governor Ayade mentioned the journalist who’s standing trial for treason and for allegedly criticising his authorities, acted out of youthful exuberance.
“I am of the opinion that Agba should be released because I think he was just youthfully excited.
“If you ask Agba Jalingo today, I am the one working with his lawyers for his freedom, I am the one sustaining him and sending upkeeps,” Ayade claimed.
The governor additionally denied being the one who ordered the journalist’s arrest, stating that the case is between Agba Jalingo and the Federal Government.
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“In court, it is Federal Government versus Agba Jalingo, not Cross River State,” Mr Ayade instructed reporters on Monday on the presidential villa, Abuja, the place he went to satisfy President Muhammadu Buhari.
“He’s in court for treason, a state does not have the power to try anyone for treason, it’s not me.”
Governor Ayade mentioned the arrest and trial of Agba Jalingo are in reference to Omoyele Sowore’s #RevolutionNow protest, including that the journalist left his core occupation and started to meddle into politics.
“On his Facebook page, he sent pictures where he was being teargassed at the revolution march in Lagos. His own pictures, posted by himself and when Sowore was being arrested, he went back to his Facebook to post that the revolution has just started, ‘we will continue this battle until revolution works’. He admitted this in Court.
“You are seeing him as a journalist, but he’s not, he’s the chairman of Sowore’s party in Cross River State so he’s a politician. He has a primary calling, which is journalism.
“Once he started the campaign to overthrow the government of President Buhari, he ceased to be seen from the point of a journalist because he has become the state chairman of a party,” Governor Ayade acknowledged.
The governor reiterated that he has been working for Mr. Jalingo’s launch from Calabar jail the place he has been incarcerated.
Until his arrest, Mr. Jalingo was the writer of Cross RiverWatch.
He was apprehended was on August 22 allegedly over a report suggesting that Governor Ayade diverted N500 million belonging to the state, a declare which the federal government has strongly refuted.