By Wisdom Deji-Folutile
A journalist with PUNCH, Friday Olokor, was on Thursday assaulted by a combined team of security operatives from the Department of State Services and the police.
According to reports, Olokor was beaten and handcuffed by the DSS and police personnel at M & M Events Centre.
Olokor said he ran into trouble when he introduced himself as a journalist.
He said, “We were invited to cover a panel discussion at the ongoing African Council of Women Conference organised by the dRPC under the Ford Foundation.
“After introducing myself, a policeman stopped me at the gate and said I should get an entrance tag. I told him I could only get the tag from the organisers and couldn’t get it unless I drove in. He refused, and I had to call Patience Ihejirika of the Leadership Newspapers, who brought my tag.
“It was during this time that the DSS operatives pounced on me and tore my shirt. They were joined by policemen, who were all armed. They said I should sit down, but I stood up. I was handcuffed. They seized Patience Ihejirika’s phone and deleted the videos and photos of the incident while one of the police officers threatened to beat her up.
“I called a senior DSS officer, who happened to be my friend from school. Even when he tried to speak with them, they refused. ‘Tell him we’re not talking to him’, one of them said.
“An Assistant Director of the DSS later called to apologise to me with a promise that the personnel involved would be summoned to write a report about what transpired.”
According to Olokor, the DSS operatives also seized Ihejirika’s phone and deleted some vital videos to ensure that she did not record the assault.