A man who has been parading himself as a journalist has been arrested for impersonation.
A man who had been parading himself as the Assistant Editor of a leading new magazine in the country, The News, identified as Segun Odofin, was on Sunday, August 9, arrested at a reception party in honour of the outgoing Controller General of the Nigeria Security and Civil Defence Corps (NSCDC), Dr. Ade Abolurin in Abeokuta, the Ogun state capital.
Odofin's cover was blown when a Lagos based journalist who knows the real Assistant Editor of the magazine drew the attention of the state Correspondent Chapel's Chairman, Kunle Olayeni, who called the impersonator outside and interrogated him.
It was discovered that Odofin who had never trained as a journalist, had been parading himself as one for many years.
Another journalist who claimed he had seen the culprit at different functions, disclosed that he was also present at the funeral ceremony of Senator Olorunmibe Mamora’s mother, held at in Ijebu Ife in Ijebu East local government area of the state, a few days earlier.
The journalist told his colleagues that he overheard people complaining at the funeral ceremony that the suspect had taken some money from them with the promise to help publish a story but ran away when attempts were made to arrest him.
The fake journalist, while being interrogated, reportedly produced an identity card with inscription of ‘The News Magazine’, even boasting that he has been practicing journalism years before many of the journalists present at the venue began work, adding that, he started his practice with Nigerian Tribune newspaper.
A call was immediately put across to the State Correspondent of PM News/The News magazine, Abiodun Onafuye, who dismissed all claims by Odofin.
The suspect was to later change his story to claim he was a freelance journalist but his cover had already been blown as he was immediately handed over to the officers of NSCDC who transferred him to the Ibara Divisional Police Headquarters of Nigerian Police in Ibara, Abeokuta.
He was said to have later confessed to printing the identity card himself, claiming that he started impersonating the media outfit because of ‘a challenge’.
It was further revealed that the suspect had earlier passes a note to the Deputy Controller General of the NSCDC, demanding monetary gratification for covering the event.
The note read:
“Press: Our Dear DCG, we are the gentlemen of the Press that came to cover the ceremony. We highly recognise your presence and we hold you in high esteem. Kindly Sir, put smiles on our faces to make our journey back to Lagos. We are five press men. Thanks.”