Government security forces frequently harass, arrested, and detain editors and reporters from journals critical of the regime. On November 4, 1997 Aoetokunbo Fakeye, defense correspondent for The News, was arrested. On November 8, Jenkins Alumona, editor of The News, was arrested by SSS agents at a Lagos television station. On November 9, Onome Osifo-Whiskey, managing editor of Tell magazine, was arrested by SSS agents in Lagos while driving to church with his children. On October 29, Osifo-Whiskey had warned that the magazine had received a written death threat, which listed the names of 27 staff members. On November 16, SSS agents arrested Babafemi Ojudu, editor of the News/Tempo. Rafiu Salau, an administration editor for the News/Tempo, was also arrested in mid-November. Former chairman of the editorial board of the daily The Guardian and a visiting professor of journalism at a US university, Olatunji Dare, was detained overnight and his passport seized upon his arrival from the United States on 02 June 1997. He was told to report to the SSS to retrieve his passport. After being interrogated on 17 June by SSS officials about his activities abroad, his passport was returned.
The Government represses the political activities of opposition groups. Public meetings are arbitrarily canceled or prevented, including cultural events, academic conferences, and human rights meetings. On 25 September 1997, police and SSS agents broke up a Human Rights Africa (HRA) seminar for students in Jos, arrested HARA director Tunji Abayomi and 4 others, and briefly detained some 70 students. Abayomi and the others were held for 10 days and then released on bail. A 01 May 1998 workshop on conflict management in Port Harcourt was canceled when the SSS warned local coordinators that such a meeting could not be held on Workers Day, a local holiday. Similar workshops elsewhere proceeded unimpeded despite the holiday.