Published On: Fri, Feb 23rd, 2024

Hunger: Delta Peaceful Protest Canceled As Soldiers ‘Brutalise’ Journalist, Arrest Activist

DELTA HUNGER PROTEST

LAGOS FEBRUARY 23RD (URHOBOTODAY)-Soldiers from the Nigerian Army 3 Battalion in Effurun, Uvwie Local Government Area of Delta State in the early hours of Friday arrested the South-South Bureau Chief of Galaxy Television, Mr. Dele Fasan, for recording video clips during a planned labour protest in the metropolis.

Also, the soldiers whisked a human rights activist, Comrade Israel Joe, to a nearby military barracks, following a mild, rift between him and other activists including Kelvin Ejumudo and others.

However, the planned protest could not hold in the Delta metropolis as it was cancelled after critical stakeholders met and discussed the issues on Thursday night.

The molestation of the television journalist took place at the popular DSC roundabout in Effurun where the soldiers allegedly brutalised and hit him with the butt of the guns.

Witnesses said that Fasan was picked up by the soldiers in the presence of the police team led by a Deputy Commissioner of Police, DC Operations, Aina Adesola.

But Fasan was released by the soldiers following the intervention of the police boss and his colleagues who appealed to the Army Commander, Major AE Ohegbe, on whose order he was released and the handcuff pulled off.

Confirming his arrest in a chat with newsmen shortly after, Fasan said he was “trying to get video clips of the protest scene which was already taken over by security operatives when the overzealous soldiers accosted him

Witnesses said that Fasan was picked up by the soldiers in the presence of the police team led by a Deputy Commissioner of Police, DC Operations, Aina Adesola.

But Fasan was released by the soldiers following the intervention of the police boss and his colleagues who appealed to the Army Commander, Major AE Ohegbe, on whose order he was released and the handcuff pulled off.

Confirming his arrest in a chat with newsmen shortly after, Fasan said he was “trying to get video clips of the protest scene which was already taken over by security operatives when the overzealous soldiers accosted him

He said, “The military were not civil at all during the protest. But the police led by DCP Aina Adesola, the Navy, the DSS, and NSCDC operatives were civil as they all intervened and I was released”.

Fasan spoke further saying that the Army Commander, Major Ahegbe, later apologised to him after the ugly act had already been done.

Also speaking with journalists, the National Secretary of Human Rights Protection Congress, Comrade Kelvin Ejumudo said the Civil Society Organisations came out to ensure that the protest did not hold following the threat across the nation.

“We don’t want any protest at all because when it happens, people will lose their properties. People will lose their money”, he said.

“While we were at the protest venue, we had the proponent (Israel Joe) of the protest for selfish reasons come here, and we had a one-on-one rift and he had been taken away by security operatives.

“I will not condone any idea of protest in this state because, at the moment, Nigeria is volatile,” he added.

He, however, urged President Bola Ahmed Tinubu and all the 36 state governors with the local government chairmen to, as a matter of urgency, tackle the hunger in the land.

“Nigerians don’t want food. We want employment, we want our refineries to be functional, we want to produce what we can sell,” he stated.

The Deputy Commissioner of Police, Operations, DCP Aina Adesola while speaking with newsmen said he was sent to the scene by the Commissioner of Police to maintain peace.

Punch

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