One journalist, others injured as DSS attack peaceful protesters

November 13, 2019

Operatives of the Department of State Services (DSS), on Tuesday, opened fire on some journalists covering a peaceful protest at its headquarters in Asokoro, Abuja.

The journalists were at the DSS headquarters on the invitation of #FreeSowore campaigners, the group demanding for the release of Mr. Omoyele Sowore, the publisher of Sahara Reporters.

Mr. Sowore has been held by the DSS for over one hundred days, despite court judgements granting him bail.

Human Rights lawyer, Femi Falana, had accused the DSS of plotting to file additional charges against Mr Sowore in order to continue justifying his remand in custody, which he declared as effectively illegal since Wednesday when he met all conditions.

But the DSS claimed on Friday that it was holding Sowore because no one had come to pick him up.

Trouble, however, started when operatives of the DSS, on sighting the protesters, opened fire, shooting live ammunition and teargas on both journalists and protesters, while attempting to crush them with their vehicles.

Cameras and microphones of some journalists were also broken as others scampered for dear lives.
Guardian reporter, Oludare Richards sustained serious injuries during the encounter, while other Journalists had their cars’ tyres deflated with some smashed by the DSS operational vans.

Meanwhile, It ws reported that the Convener of #FreeSowore campaign, Prince Deji Adeyanju, had alluded that he was offered one million naira (N1m) bribe to abort the protest demanding the release of Mr. Sowore.

Addressing journalists at the DSS headquarters on Tuesday, Prince Adeyanju, who led hundreds of protesters to demand the release of Mr. Sowore, said some powerful individuals and organizations were working in synergy to keep him in the DSS custody longer than necessary.

Shortly after the demonstration began, Mr Adeyanju displayed new N500 notes he said totalled N1 million before other protesters and journalists.

He said the money was offered to him at gunpoint to call off the protest, though he did not mention the source of the money.

“This money was offered at gunpoint but I won’t tell you by who. We collected it because it was offered at gunpoint.

” We are calling at the owners of this money to come for it, else we shall donate it to Chief Falana to help the legal activities in securing the release of Sowore “, he said.

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