Rotimi Jolayemi, a journalist detained for broadcasting a poem which was deemed insulting to the Minister of Information and Culture, Lai Mohammed, has told PREMIUM TIMES that he does not regret his actions.
Mr Jolayemi, who anchors a Yoruba radio programme, ‘Bi aye se ri’ on Osun State Broadcasting Service and Radio Kwara, was arrested by the police on May 5.
According to a document obtained by our reporter, the police filed a one-count charge marked FHC/ABJ/CR/104/2020 against the journalist on May 22, 16 days after he was detained.
However, on Friday, the Nigeria Police Force released him following the approval of his bail application by the Federal High Court in Abuja.
Before Friday, several rights activists and groups had called for the release of the journalist, accusing Mr Mohammed of abuse of power.
Although freed, Mr Jolayemi is reportedly still lodged in a hotel in Abuja, waiting to sign some documents on Monday before going back to Kwara State.
Speaking with this newspaper on Saturday morning, he confirmed that the police had earlier detained his wife, Dorcas Jolayemi, for eight days in a bid to get at him.
Also, he affirmed that two of his relatives, Joseph Jolayemi and John Jolayemi, were also detained for two days.
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Commenting on his ordeal with the police in Abuja, he said “he was treated nicely and that the cops handled him in a professional way.”
“When I was taken from Ilorin to Abuja, those people (the police) took care of me even on the way. They did everything nicely to me. When I got to Abuja. The AIG told them to take good care of me. I was not tortured. They did everything with professionalism,” he said.
When asked if he had any regret sharing the poem which led to his arrest, he said; “I have never regretted and I will never regret broadcasting that poem.”
“I still maintain my position. I stand by it,” Mr Jolayemi added defiantly.