Policeman Assaults Protester, Victim, Journalist In Abuja, Says ‘You Are Protesting For Ashawo’

A Nigerian man Adeeko Ademola was on Friday assaulted by policemen at the venue of the protest against the unconscionable conduct of policemen after officers were accused of raping and molesting female detainees.

Abuja based citizen, Adeeko Ademola, was harassed for daring to stop a policeman who was assaulting a journalist at the venue of the protest.

Mr. Adeeko, in an exclusive phone conversation with SaharaReporters, said the journalist was interviewing a victim of the police raid on women in Abuja when a policeman from the police media team came with his camera and started focusing on her face.

The lady (victim) had told the journalist that she didn’t want to appear on camera so she asked the policeman to stop filming her and the journalist joined voice to get the policeman to back off but he insisted on keeping the camera on the lady he referred to as “Ashawo” and this resulted into arguments between the policeman and the journalist.

According to Adeeko, the policeman in no minutes started choking the journalist and slapped him in the process.

“So, where I was standing, a lady who was a victim of the raid in Abuja was being interviewed by a Journalist and he was writing down the interview with her, the woman had told the journalist that “I don’t want to be on my camera, I’ll answer your questions but I don’t want my face on camera” which is pretty much normal for someone who’s a victim.

“Then, this policeman who was a media guy for the police, he was on police uniform, he had his own camera and he was going about recording what was happening then he got to where the journalist was interviewing the lady (victim) and he started pointing the camera at her and the lady said; “see Oga I don’t want to be on camera, there’s a reason I don’t want to be on camera, please take your camera off me.

“He didn’t listen, he insisted on filming her so the Journalist had to leave his own gadgets and said please we’re sorry, we’re currently interviewing this person and she has asked to remain anonymous kindly take your camera off her face, that was his very simple request.

“I was watching while all these were going on and I was hoping it won’t escalate because I was expecting the policeman to walk away but he insisted and when the woman was trying to hide her face he kept following her with the camera. So, at a point the journalist started challenging him saying; “No Oga, this is not right” then next thing I saw the police choking the journalist to the point that he slapped the journalist and his eyeglasses fell off from his face.” Adeeko narrated to SaharaReporters.

At this point, Mr. Adeeko could not take it so he walked up to them to try calm things but according to him the policemen turned to him, harassed him and lied to their boss that he slapped one of them.

“That was when I had to step him and I said No No No, this should not be happening, we’re still talking about abuse and you’re caring it out right in front of us why should you raise your hand on her?

“So, while we were trying to settle, the Journalist was still angry he wanted to fight back, so I held him and begged him to not escalate this because this is what the police want, they want to cause violence so they can have a reason to send us away. So, while I was calming the journalist, the policeman kept pointing at him saying he’ll deal with him, that he’ll drop his camera and beat him up.

“So, I went to the police officer and said “Oga it’s okay we’re trying to make sure this doesn’t get out of hand,” as if what I said was too bad, this guy faced me and started asking who are you? Identify yourself, and I was like Oga why are you asking me all these questions I only asked you to calm down and let this blow away let’s face what we’re here for.

“Then the next thing his colleagues walked up there and they started saying they’ll beat me up and at point I had to stand up for myself so I told him it’s not possible and then he said; if not for the uniform I’m putting on I would have dealt with you right here and while this argument was still ongoing, one of the police officers came to me and grabbed me by the waste and he said I should follow him so I told him I’m not going anywhere with him so they left me and walked up to their boss (a lady) and told her I slapped one of them and they came back and started asking me if I was the one that slapped a police officer and I said no that In fact, he was the one who slapped a journalist right here in front of everyone and we didn’t even retaliate but they kept on mentioning that I slapped the policeman.

“And then their boss came and he didn’t even ask me anything, he only asked two of the policemen there and they both lied to him and I asked that he let me talk too but they didn’t allow me to defend myself and he just said “arrest him” so, they started dragging me and that was when people came around and were like NO! you’re going to have to arrest all of us so when they saw the crowd was much more than them, they had to back off but those two guys (the policemen with the camera) came to me and started recording my face they even took pictures of me and one of them promised me that he’s going to deal with me, that’s he’ll take my pictures and videos and he’ll use it to track me down and deal with me,” Adeeko said.

One of the officers at the protest was ASP Gajere Tanimu Danjuma, the PRO of FCT command.

SaharaReporters had, on May 2, reveal in a report how some women sexually assaulted by police officers who used ‘pure water sachets’ as improvised condoms.

Ever since the report, Nigerians have taken to social media to condemn the alleged rape and molestation of female detainees by police officers in Abuja.

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