Nigeria: writers and academics protest charges against journalist Omoleye Sowore

(Photo credit: Mohamed Nanabhay)M

English PEN’s President Philippe Sands is among the many writers and academics to have added their support to the following letter calling for all charges against Nigerian journalist Omoleye Sowore to be dropped.

Dear Sir or Madame,

We, the undersigned, write to express our deep concern regarding the arrest of journalist and activist Mr. Omoyele Sowore in Nigeria on August 3, 2019. Sowore was detained without bail by the Nigerian State Security Service in Lagos. There are seven charges against him including treason and money laundering. A High Court judge has ruled that Sowore should be released pending his trial but must surrender his passport.

 Mr. Sowore is a world-renowned journalist. He has pioneered new and important avenues in the field of investigative journalism. He is a graduate of the Columbia School of International and Public Affairs. In addition, he is the founder of the well-known online investigative news outlet, Sahara Reporters that focuses on corruption and political misconduct.  

 Many colleagues in the worlds of journalism and academia hold Mr. Sowore in great esteem for his life-long effort in speaking truth to power. 

Please consider dropping the charges against Mr. Sowore and please release him as soon as possible.

**Add your support here**


Ned Phelps, winner of the 2006 Nobel Memorial Prize in Economic Sciences

Philippe Sands QC, President of English PEN

Niran Okewole, Second Vice President, PEN Nigeria   & Chair, Writers in Prison Committee  

Zaffar Abbas editor, Dawn newspaper, Pakistan

Victor Herrero


Roby Alampay Business World, Philippines

Guilherme Amado Abraji, EPOCA, Brazil

Mauricio Angelo The Mining Observatory, Brazil

Jennifer Avila Contracorrente, Honduras

Karen Attiah Journalist, Washington Post

Caelain Barr The Guardian

Eliza Margarita Bates

Benjamin Becker USA

Nathalie Bertrams freelance journalist, Brussels

Charl Blignaut City Press, South Africa

Shanta Bloemen

Clifford Bob Professor, Duquesne University

Christopher Booker Journalist, PBS

Anissa Bouziane writer

Cate Brown

Thanassii Cambanis senior fellow, The Century Foundation

Prue Clarke Senior Executive Officer at the Judith Neilson Institute for Journalism and Ideas

Oliver Classen Media Director, Public Eye, Switzerland

Carl Collison freelance journalist

Sheila Coronel Professor, Columbia Journalism School

Ann Cooper Ann Cooper, Professor Emirata, Columbia Journalism School

Peter Cunliffe-Jones Author & Africheck

Pooja Dantewadia data journalist, India

Jacqueline Davalos

Ides Debruyn

Samuel de Jaeger Austria

Anuska Delic Ostrp, Slovenia

Paulette Desormeaux Sembra Media

Amira Dhalla

Kunda Dixit Nepali Times

Marius Draogmir Director, Center for Media, Data and Society

Claudia Dreifus Professor, Columbia University

Pamela Druckerman writer, Paris

Ngozi Marion

Emmanuel Nigeria/UK

Ingrid Ernø International Development Consultant

Govindraj Ethiraj founder, India Spend

Liza Featherstone Journalist, The Nation

Maxime Ferrer Le Monde

Mary Fitzgerald Open Democracy

Will Fitzgibbon ICIJ

Nathaniel Parrish


Claudia Fischer, Freelance journalist, Germany

Rana Foroohar, Journalist, FT & CNN

Ingrid Gercama freelance journalist, Netherlands

Catherine Gicheru, journalist, ICFJ

Todd Gitlin Professor, Columbia Journalism School

Misha Glenny, Journalist

Daniel Gorman, Director, English PEN

Steven Greenhouse, former New York Times reporter

Kristen Grennan

Maureen Grisot

John Grobler Investigative journalist, Namibia

Emilie Guitard Laboratoire PRODIG, CNRS.

Mujib Habibzai

Ferrial Haffajee journalist, editor

Delphine Halgand-

Mishra executive director, The Signals Network

Anton Harber Univeristy of Witswatersrand, South Africa

Ernest Harsch Journalist & Research Scholar, Insitute of African Studies, Columbia University

Larry Heinzerling Columbia University

Stefanie Helbig jounalist, Autorenwerk

James Hollings Professor, Massey University

Robert Howse Professor New York University

Carlos Huertas Connectas

Mark Lee Hunter founding member, Global Investigative Journalism Network

Houb Jaspers VPRO Broadcasting, the Netherlands

Elunya Joseph Uganda

Kago Kamane Ink Centre for Investigative Journalism, Botswana

Tim Karr Tim Karr

Shruti Kedia


Kehnscherper Switzerland

Ruby Khan

Sameeksha Khare

Peter Klein Executive Director, Global Reporting Centre

Sophie Knowles Middlesex University, UK

Andrea Kramar

Kamel Labidi Journalist and Human Rights Defender

Kirsty Lang Journalist

Patrick Langat Daily Nation, Kenya

Thomas Lansner Professor, Columbia University

Jan Lublinski DW Akademie

Tom Maliti Journalist, International Justice Monitor

Gregory Mann Professor, Columbia University

Niha Masik

Dr. C McMahon

Karolina Koc

Michalska Professor, Audiencia Business School

Andrea Milivojevic Cenrer for Investigative Journalism, Serbia

Mira Milosevic GFMD

Miriam Missbichler Sciences-Po

Marius Moniak Goethe University

Elise Mougin Science Po

Jessica Murray

Joseph Mwenda Zambia News Diggers

Kwetey Nartey Joy News, Ghana

Okey Ndibe Novelist

Akbar Noman Columbia University

Sarah Jane Noujeim


Ntibinyane Ink Centre for Investigative Journalism, Botswana

Anselm Okolo Journalist

Ivan Okuda Wits University

Dayo Olopade

Joshua Olufemi Premium Times

Barnaby Pace Global Witness

Samantha Pilane Ink Centre for Investigative Journalism, Botswana

Ned Phelps Nobel Prize in Economics, 2006

Viviana Phelps

Rafael Rauch Swiss TV

Gavin Rees Dart Center, London

Mosibudi Rettebjane journalist, South Africa

Yazan Rous Arab Reporters for Investigative Journalism

Stella Roque Open Markets Institute, Washington DC

Juliana Ruhfu Al Jazeera

Rana Sabbagh executive director, Arab Reporters for Investigative Journalism

Felix Salmon Journalist

Philippe Sands Q.C.

Joseph J Sass

Anya Schiffrin Professor, Columbia University School of International and Public Affairs

J. Ross Settles Hong Kong University

Liuba Șevciuc Rise Moldova

Bruce Shapiro Journalist and Professor, Dart Center, Columbia Journalism School

Khadija Sharife Africa Editor, Organized Crime and Corruption Reporting Project

Jayeeta Sharma Professor, University of Toronto

Francisca Skoknick director, School of Journalism, University Diego Portales, Chile

Sandisiwe Shoba Daily Maverick, South Africa

Helene Spiritus Brazil

Christoph Spurk Professor, Institute of Applied Media Studies

Dean Starkman Journalist

Mark Steitz Professor, Columbia University

Ruti Teitel Ernest C Stiefel professor, New York Law School

Sanne Teringen Argos, VPRO (Netherlands)

Deepak Tiwari India

Julia Ritz Toffoli

Estacio Valoi Mozambique Investigative Journalism Center

Sofia Vargas C4ADS

Raffi Wartanian

Jeanny Wasielewski

Leon William

**Add your support here**

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