John Agim, defence headquarters (DHQ) spokesman, says Daily Trust offices were shut down because of a story published by the newspaper which revealed “the military’s plan on the fight against insurgency”.
Speaking on a Channels TV programme on Sunday, Agim said by publishing the report, the media house portrayed itself to be “sympathetic” to Boko Haram terrorists.
“I think it is completely unacceptable for any media house to have information about the military plan on the fight against insurgency and publish such plans,” Agim said.
“Boko Haram terrorists will be informed ahead of time and that also shows that they (Daily Trust) are sympathetic to the insurgents and the intention was just to invite them and let them understand the dangers their action puts on the military.
“So, the intention is not to stop the press from doing their job. They need to understand that without peace and security in the land, they cannot perform their job.
“So for everybody who has information, there’s a need to check with the security agencies before they publish such because releasing such information ahead of time can jeopardise the operation.”
On Sunday, armed soldiers stormed Daily Trust offices in Abuja, Maiduguri, Borno state capital, and Lagos.
The soldiers requested to see Hamza Idris, the newspaper’s political editor who co-authored Sunday’s front page report which featured the military’s operation in the north-east.
Uthman Abubakar, the newspaper’s regional editor and Ibrahim Sawab, a reporter were arrested, while laptops were seized and the offices closed down.
Following a presidential order on the same day, soldiers vacated the offices of the media house.