The Premium Times Centre for Investigative Journalism, PTCIJ, has launched a Press Attack tracker as part of its strategic vision of ensuring freedom of expression and its fight against press gagging.
The tracker, named pressattackng, seeks to document and track threats and attacks on journalists nationwide. This tracker will establish comprehensive method of documenting the oppression many human rights activist face with a tracking method that has never been done in Nigeria.
The Chief Executive of the Centre, Dapo Olorunyomi, stated, “this is just one of our few attempts at creating accountability in Nigeria. We cannot sit back while injustice plagues our society”
He added that “ our vision is that this will bring the attention of the masses to how people in power manipulate information, choosing what we are allowed to know and gagging press when it is at their expense ”
The tracker is the innovative outcome of Premium Times Center for Investigative Journalism with the support of Free Press Unlimited, an Amsterdam based organisation dedicated to free press.
This technological innovation is in line with PTCIJ`s strategic mission to use civic technology to help solve critical social and development issues in Nigeria.
Commenting on the Press Attack Tracker, Joshua Olufemi, the programme director of the centre, encouraged “ journalist to make good use of the app, this will create a systematic way of gathering information which will serve as a viable advocacy tool’’
Speaking further, he brought to light “this is the first press attack tracking tool created by an indigenous organisation, we have to be our brother’s keeper”
The tracker is embedded with a geo-location tracking system which points to the exact location an attack or unlawful arrest occurred. This geo-location tracking allows activist to be aware of high risk areas, how often attacks occur and shed light on the freedom of journalist to practice on different sub-national levels.
Mr. Olufemi encouraged stakeholders in freedom of expression to seek collaboration with PTCIJ as a way of making the tracker realise its greatest potentials as an advocacy tool for press freedom.
The tracker can be accessed on Press Attack NG and can work with any type of smartphone.