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The Punch is a Nigerian daily newspaper. It is the second largest newspaper in the country in terms of circulation, with 80,000 copies published daily in 1999.
The Punch newspaper was founded by two friends, James Aboderin, an accountant and Sam Amuka, a columnist and editor at the Daily Times. Sam Amuka became the first editor of the Sunday Punch. In November 1976, a few years after the first print of its Sunday edition, the duo starting printing its trademark daily newspaper. Both editions were designed to favor a friendlier apolitical approach to news reporting, combining footages of social events with everyday political news. The paper sustains itself by delving into broad issues that interests a myriad of people.
However, during the twilight of the Second Republic, political exigencies had introduced conflicts to its original intentions, Aboderin and Amuka parted ways due partly to political conflicts. Aboderin later secured the support of his former foe, MKO Abiola, after the latter left the NPN. The paper began to take on a political stance, mostly against the Shagari regime. Supposedly, days before the end of the administration of Shagari, a few Punch editors were aware of a coup approaching and injected strong anti-government tones in their reporting.
The Punch was not immune to the excess of authoritarian regimes in the country. In 1990, its editor was jailed for 54 days. In 1993, and 1994, the publishing house was closed on the direction of the nation's ruler.
- ^ Adigun Agbaje, Freedom of the Press and Party Politics in Nigeria: Precepts, Retrospect and Prospects African Affairs > Vol. 89, No. 355 Apr., 1990
- Ayo Olutokun and Dele Seteolu, The Media and Democratic Rule in Nigeria, Development Policy Management Network Bulletin. Vol. XIII, N° 3, September 2001.
- Adigun Agbaje, Freedom of the Press and Party Politics in Nigeria: Precepts, Retrospect and Prospects African Affairs > Vol. 89, No. 355 Apr., 1990