Two journalists at a Nigerian newspaper face criminal charges over a story they published on alleged plans by the nation's presidency to disrupt opposition parties.

Azubuike Ishiekwene, the group managing director of the daily Abuja-based newspaper Leadership, told The Associated Press the journalists had been released on bail after a court appearance Tuesday. Ishiekwene said it wasn't immediately clear what the actual charges against the two writers were.

Federal police spokesman Frank Mba did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

The report claimed a leaked memo the newspaper obtained showed the administration of Nigeria's President Goodluck Jonathan wanted to put surveillance on opponents and possibly influence the country's Independent National Electoral Commission. The presidency described the report as false.