Haruna Mohammed, the publisher of WikkiTimes, a Bauchi State-based platform, and Idris Kamal, a journalist with the outfit, is currently being held by officers of the Bauchi State Police Command after they honored an invitation by the police.
The journalists were initially released after 10 hours at the police station on Monday, but upon their return to the station the following day as directed by the police, they were taken before a Magistrate Court where an order was given that they are kept in police custody.
FIJ learned that the journalists’ ordeal is connected with a WikkiTimes report titled ‘How Bauchi APC Chairman Died After Series of Threats’ and published on Saturday, May 18.
The report, which details how Hussaini Musa Gwaba, chairman of the All-Progressives Congress (APC) in Bauchi State, received a series of threats before being eventually assassinated, is reproduced below:
Prior to his death, the slain Chairman of the All-Progressives Congress, APC Bauchi local government Hon Hussaini Musa Gwaba received a series of threats, allegedly from boys loyal to some party stalwarts in the State.
The Chairman was found dead in a hotel room in Bauchi. The slain politician rented the room immediately after he administered an oath of office to members of the Bauchi local government executive council of the APC.
WikkiTimes reliably gathered that the emergence of the assassinated Chairman angered Hon Yakubu Shehu Abdullahi, a member representing Bauchi Federal Constituency. Multiple sources told this medium that Yakubu Shehu Abdullahi was not happy with the emergence of Mr. Gwaba as Chairman of the party.
A source who pleaded anonymity told this medium that Mr. Abdullahi considered the late APC Chairman as a “threat to his 2023 political ambition.”
Another source told this newspaper that members of the APC who are loyal to Mr. Abdullahi held a parallel meeting, “where they inaugurated another set of APC leaders who are perceived to be loyal to the lawmaker, as against the slain Chairman’s led executives.”
“There was the destruction of equipment during the purported emergence of the parallel excos at the LG party secretariat”, the source added.
WikkiTimes can report that Hon Yakubu Abdullahi is nursing for reelection after he was first voted to represent Bauchi Federal Constituency in the lower chamber in 2019.
The deceased Chairman was a loyalist to a former governor of Bauchi State, Mohammed Abdullahi Abubakar who was alleged to have denied Yakubu Abdullahi APC ticket while he was governor of the state in 2019.
The fracas at the time compelled Mr Shehu to defect to the People’s Redemption Party under whose platform he won the election. He returned to the APC in February 2021.
“On that eventful night, he told his close associates that he would rather sleep elsewhere than his house in view of the death threats he has been receiving of late.
“The Chairman spent the night at the hotel up to Saturday morning. However, in the morning a woman identified as Hajiya Kaltume Katagum who was a former APC women leader in Azare visited him at the hotel.
“Few minutes after her arrival, she came downstairs shouting that Hussaini Musa Gwaba is dead in the room,” a source familiar with the incident told our reporter.
He said that the body of the late APC Chairman was found naked in his hotel. “It seems there was a penetration of injection on his laps”, the source added.
WikkiTimes gathered that Hajiya Kaltume was a retired health worker having worked at Bayara General Hospital.
The family of the slain chairman demanded an autopsy be conducted on his body to determine the true cause of his death. His body was sent to Jos for an autopsy before it was buried in Bauchi on Tuesday.
The autopsy details are not yet in the public domain as of press time.
SP Ahmed Mohammed Wakil, Police Public Relations Officer Bauchi State Command confirmed the assassination of Mr Gwaba in a statement.
He said three people were arrested as prime suspects but did not divulge further details.
He said until his death, the chairman had no known case of a rift with anybody in APC.