Delegates to the ongoing National Conference in Abuja, Wednesday could no longer hide their disdain for members of the Fourth Estate of the Realm, as they ordered journalists covering the conference out of plenary.
The co-chairman of the Committee on National Security, Albert Horsfall, had requested that the Conference Chairman, Justice Idris Kutigi, asked journalists to excuse the delegates before he could present the committee’s report.
His argument was that care must be taken in discussing issues bothering on national security. But, Horsfal, a former Director-General of the State Security Service, is known to be against the idea of allowing journalists to cover the conference.
“I appeal to our friends journalists to shut their ears so that they don’t hear the next point I want touch on.
“If the Conference Chair will permit, they (journalists) might be asked to leave us for five minutes because the issues of national security.
“I still think it is important for people to know that members of this conference are privileged,” Horsfall had requested.
Surprisingly, Conference chairman, Justice Kutigi, expressly granted the request and asked journalists to step out in a manner considered as rude to the gentlemen of the press.
“Will the pressmen clear themselves, pressmen should disappear. Pressmen disappear. Shut your cameras, shut everything and get out.
“Security men, get them out of the gallery, get them out immediately.
“Who are those still on the top (gallery)? Clear, get out of there, disappear. Pressmen disappear. Who knows about them if not because of the camera?,” Justice Kutigi had yelled.