Nasarawa road Safety coups Assaults AIT reporter in Lafia
Officers of the Federal Road Safety Corps, FRSC, Nasarawa State Command, have reportedly lynched an AIT reporter who tried to take photographs of the corps officers who were allegedly extorting money from motorists and commercial motorcyclists popularly known as ‘okada’ riders.
The incident, which happened along Jos Road by the Nasarawa Polytechnic gate in Lafia at about 10:15am, attracted the intervention of the Emir of Lafia, Alhaji Mustapher Agwei I, who was passing by and other prominent personalities who are familiar with the reporter.
According to Mr. Ibrahim Ibrahim, the AIT reporter, “I was driving when I got to the point in front of the Polytechnic where the Road Safety normally position themselves to carry out their routine checks. Right there I saw them collecting money from okada riders who were in their numbers.
“I then decided to take snapshots this time around because I have met them extorting money from motorists on several occasions, to back up my report when suddenly one of the Road Safety officers pounced on me and began to drag my camera with the me.
“When I refused to surrender the camera, they started molesting me and in the process they snatched my phone. It took the intervention of the Emir of Lafia who stopped over when he noticed I was the one the corps were brutalizing, to calm the situation,” Ibrahim narrated.
Another person that intervened in the conflict was the Chairman of the Nigerian Union of Journalists, NUJ, Nasarawa State correspondents, Mr. Suleiman Abubakar, who in the process of making peace between his member and the corps officials, was threatened that they will not recognise anybody and would not mind to drawing a battle line with the NUJ
It was at that point the Emir of Lafia pleaded with the officers who had already called the Special Anti-Robbery Squad, SARS, to arrest the AIT reporter, if he does not deleted the photos.
As the crisis degenerated further, the Sector Commander, Faustina Alegbe, was linked up on a telephone call to plead with her officers to let the matter end peacefully.
In her response, the Sector Commander ordered the Emir to compel the AIT report to write a formal apology letter and also delete the photos that were taken.
When the pressmen who were at the scene of the crisis called the Sector Commander to get her side of the matter, she said that the reporter was wrong for snapping officers of the Command while on duty and ordered that the reporter should write an apology letter for breaking the law.