Moments after the Inspector General of Police, Mohammed Adamu, announced the disbandment of the Special Anti-Robbery Squad (SARS) yesterday, October, 11, its operatives went berserk in Abuja, brutalizing an Arise TV cameraman, Francis Ogbonna, inflicting on him severe bodily injuries. As at the time of filing in this report, Ogbonna was still writhing in agonizing pains from deep cuts on his head, hand and other parts of his body.
Recounting the ordeal moments after, his colleague, an Arise TV reporter, Ferdinand Duruoha, who witnessed it all, and was in fact, also harassed, said, “We took the IG’s message live on Twitter banning SARS, and on returning from that particular interview, we saw some youth along the road, protesting.
“While we were trying to speak to them and get their takes on the IG’s message, we were attacked by policemen who have brutally assaulted Francis and broken his camera and Arise News camera.
“This is the result of that brutality. I am about taking him to the hospital but then, we just need to get this as a sign of evidence of what the police has just done.”
Meanwhile, a civil society organization, Centre Against Brutality and for Safety of Journalists in Africa (CABSOJA) has condemned, in strong terms, the brutality and inhuman degradation of Mr. Ogbonna, saying “it is yet another sad reminder of the very sorry situation of security in Nigeria,” stressing that “CABSOJA shall fully participate to ensure that justice is served in this matter.”
“It is regrettable to note that human rights abuses happen every second at different divisions of the police with innocent, harmless and defenseless Nigerians falling victims on daily basis,” lamented the CSO’s co-founders, Ugochukwu Ezekiel and Desmond Utomwen, who also added, “we call on the Inspector General of Police to ensure the immediate arrest of the perpetrators of this inhuman act and ensure that they pay for their crimes.We also call on the President and the National Assembly to immediately direct the total overhaul and reform of the Nigerian Police Force and position it for safety, security and protection of all Nigerians.”
Tags: IGP Mohammed Adamu, Francis Ogbonna, CABSOJA