Soldiers Invade NUJ Secretariat, Brutalise Journalists


NUJ-620x350On September 12, 2017, a detachment of about 20 soldiers invaded the Secretariat of the Nigeria Union of Journalists (NUJ) in Umuahia, Abia State, damaging properties and inflicting injuries on journalitsts.

They assaulted two journalists whom they suspected took their photographs, destroyed some items including phones, iPad, laptops and other working devices as well as some property belonging to the NUJ.

Some journalists who were in the NUJ secretariat at the time of the incident said they saw the convoy of soldiers driving around in a ‘show of force’ and gathered to watch them through windows and balcony only for a detachment of the soldiers to disembark, head for the Secretariat and unleash terror on them.

The soldiers are suspected to be members of ‘Operation Python Dance’ from 14 Brigade, Ohafia in Abia State in the convoy of soldiers parading Umuahia, the Abia State Capital in apparent show of force to tame the rising violence due to armed robbery, kidnapping and the activities of Biafran secessionist group, the Indigenous People of Biafra (IPOB) led by Nnamdi Kanu.

Mr. Bonny Okoro, the state correspondent of The Oracle Today disclosed that one of the soldiers gave him a slap, seized his bag, took out his Samsung tablet and smashed it on the floor. Continuing, he said a second one also stamped his booth on the screen of the tablet, while yet another hit the nuzzle of his rifle on it, thereby smashing it beyond repairs.

Mr. Sunny Nwakanma, correspondent of Daily Times who was also brutalized by the soldiers said his handset was also destroyed by the soldiers.

Maj. Oyegoke Gbadamosi, spokesman for the 14 Brigade, Nigerian Army, Ohafia, who was contacted in a telephone interview expressed shock at hearing about the invasion and promised to look into the incident.