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Nasarawa Journalist Brutalize for Covering Elections

Some personnel of the Nigerian Security and Civil Defence Corps under the Nasarawa State command, on Saturday, brutalized the Head of News, Breeze FM, Lafia, Edwin Philip, while doing a live coverage of the Governorship and House of Assembly elections in the state.

Tunisian Union Warns Over Rights After Journalist Detained

Speaking with Journalists shortly after the incident, Philip said he was simply carrying out his constitutional and legitimate role when the NSCDC personnel attacked him with a weapon, leaving a deep injury on his head.

Edwin Philip– Head of News, Breeze FM, Lafia.

He said, “While I was reporting election proceeding live to my station, Breeze fm situation room, I got a call that voters at polling unit 061, Ciroma ward, Lafia East, are asked to come back to vote after being accredited which is against the new electoral law.

“On reaching the venue, I was told by the electorates that they were told to be accredited and go back home to return by 2: 30 pm, and their fingers were already dotted with ink, symbolising that they had voted.

“So, I sighted the Adon Garin Lafia, Ibrahim Abdullahi, who is the Chief of staff to the Emir of Lafia, then I moved away from the polling unit as he became violent and started beaten up some electorates.

“All of a sudden, he left the location only to reappear with some NSCDC personnel and ordered them to beat me up and take me away. They beat me and left a deep cut on my head and my body became swollen.”

Philip said the personnel took his wrist watch, fez cap and his mobile phone and later returned his mobile phone to him, adding that he had reported the matter to the Nasarawa State Command of the NSCDC and the Nigeria Police Force, A Division office, Lafia.

Reacting to the development, Public Relations Officer of the NSCDC State command, Victor Jerry, confirmed the attack while speaking with newsmen in Lafia on Saturday.

He, however, claimed that the personnel who carried out the attack were not deployed from the State Command, but assured that the command would launch an investigation into the matter to bring the perpetrators to book.

Meanwhile, the Nasarawa State Council of the Nigeria Union of Journalist, have condemned the attack of Edwin Philip by the personnel of the Nigeria Security and Civil Defense Corps, describing the act as barbaric and unfortunate.

This was contained in a Press Statement signed by the council secretary, Comrade Sunday John, and made available to newsmen in Lafia.

“The union received with shock and dismay, the attack on its member by officials of the Nigeria Security and Civil Defence Corps.

“The attack on the innocent Journalist was uncalled for, barbaric and unfortunate. Edwin Philip has been performing his duties in line with the Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria and professional ethics.

“The union calls on the Commandant of the NSCDC in Nasarawa State, to investigate the infringement of the fundamental Human Rights of the Journalist and punish the personnel involved to serve as deterrent to others,” the statement reads in part.

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