The Punch

Police assault, detain PUNCHMAN church protest for

- Solomom Odeniyi and Deborah Tolu-kolawole

ARMED policemen attached to the Federal Capital Territory Police Command, on Sunday, assaulted and detained a reporter with The PUNCH, Solomon Odeniyi.

Also arrested and detained was a reporter with Roots TV, Busayo Tosin.

They were dispossess­ed of their mobile telephones and other belongings before they were detained at the River Park Police Station for four hours.

The policemen were led by one U.C. Ugochukwu, who ordered the detention of the journalist­s until all ongoing services at the Dunamis Church Internatio­nal were concluded.

Recounting his experience,

Odeniyi said, “I went to Dunamis as a follow-up to what happened at the church last Sunday.

“Besides, some groups

addressed a press conference and vowed to storm the church if the congregant­s arrested in the church were not released.

“There was heavy presence of security operatives comprising the DSS and police personnel at the church, which suggested something was about to happen.

“The protest was yet to start when suddenly I saw a patrol van of seven policemen surroundin­g us (I was with a reporter from Roots TV, Busayo Tosin). Ugochukwu and his men grabbed me by the belt and accused us of being among the protesters. I showed my ID card to him, which he forcefully took, damaging it in the process.

“Before I could say another word, I was slapped by one of them, while another pointed his gun at me. I asked what my offence was. I told them that my ID card was enough evidence that I was not part of the protesters. All that fell on deaf ears.

“We were immediatel­y dispossess­ed of our phones, bundled into a waiting police patrol van and driven to the River Park Police Station.

“We pleaded with them to allow us communicat­e with our offices; the pleas were turned down. The sized items were: one power bank, three mobile phones, one camera, one tripod, and one identity card. We got to the station around 8am and were released following the interventi­on of the police high

 ??  ?? • Dunamis GO, Paul Enenche
• Dunamis GO, Paul Enenche
 ??  ?? • IGP, Usman Baba
• IGP, Usman Baba

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from Nigeria