NSCDC Officials Brutalise The Punch Correspondent in Imo State

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Chidiebube Okeoma

On December 6, 2021 operatives of the Nigerian Security and Civil Defence Corps (NSCDC) brutalised Mr. Chidiebube Okeoma,  the Imo State correspondent of The Punch newspaper at the Federal Girls Government College in Owerri, the state capital, where he went to get information for a story he was investigating on students bullying.

They thereafter arrested and bundled him to their command headquarters accusing him of being an operative of the Eastern Security Network (ESN), the militant arm of the Indigenous People of Biafra (IPOB).

While one of the NSCDC operatives hit him with the butt of his rifle, another punched him in his left eye and smashed one of his smartphones on the ground.

The journalist was released after he was interrogated by a senior officer at the command headquarters in Owerri.

Chidiebube was later treated at the Chapel Group Hospital, Ikenegbu-Owerri, having lost a lot of blood.

The journalist, while narrating his ordeal said, “We were at the FGGC, Owerri, to meet the school’s principal over a viral video where a senior student of the school was seen bullying a junior student. At the gate, the security men (NSCDC officers) stopped us and on inquiry, they said that the principal was not around.

“I asked them to take us to the vice-principal and they said he was not on seat. I asked them to take us to the next-in-command; they asked us to return next week. I told them that it was urgent, and this was when they started bullying me.”