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Fire Guts PREMIUM TIMES Head Office, Destroying Newsroom, Computers

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Fire has gutted a section of the PREMIUM TIMES head office in Abuja on Friday, damaging the newspaper’s newsroom and destroying other items.

The fire was said to have started from the office of the editor-in-chief, Musikilu Mojeed, who had already left for jumaat prayers.

The federal and FCT fire services were contacted immediately, while the building was evacuated.

Frantic efforts were also made by staff and witnesses who used extinguishers to try and extinguish the flames before firefighters arrived at the scene.

The office of the Editor-in-Chief was said to have been destroyed while the newsroom and other offices were covered in soot.

Computers, printers, furniture, documents, as well as the personal effects of Mr Mojeed were all destroyed.

According to a report, the fire, which started at about 1.30 p.m, forced the newspaper to cancel its weekly editorial meeting.

The actual cause of the fire has not been ascertained, but fire officers said they suspected an electrical fault

Commenting on the incident, Assistant Managing Editor, Bisi Abidoye, who witnessed the incident, said, “We noticed smoke billowing from the Editor-in-Chief’s office about 20 minutes after he left for the mosque. It was all so sudden and the damage was so severe,” he said.

Mr Abidoye said the incident has been reported to the authorities for formal investigation.

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