By Usman Nafada, Gombe
The Gombe State chapter of the Nigeria Union of Journalists (NUJ), has declared a total blackout on the activities of the state Police Command following the continuous harassment and molestation of its members by personnel of the force.
Chairman of the Council, Alhassan Yaya who spoke at the Correspondents’ Chapel on Tuesday said his members have cooperated with the Police Command as partners but see no reason why their personnel continue to see and treat journalists like enemies
The Divisional Police Officer, Motor Traffic Department (MTD), Deputy Superintendent of Police (DSP), William Kashere had at the weekend harassed an employee of the Nigeria Television Authority reporter, Shafa Abdulmumin and beaten up her camera man Lukman Abubakar, as well as destroyed his camera.
Narrating their ordeal, Abdulmumin said they were trying to do a report on how motorists and motorcyclists beat traffic lights with impunity around Gombe Water Corporation when Kashere pounced on the cameraman.
She complained of being fractured as the police attempted to snatch her for which she used for documenting the encounter, even as they tear-gassed everyone in the NTA roving van as they drove away.
They were attracted to the scene by the arrest of one Waziri Mohammed another NTA for beating the traffic with just a second.
“We were there and saw other people beating the traffic with impunity. The police usually arrest motorcyclists only and once they get one or two, they allow other do what they like.
“So I thought this was a good story angle, seeing road users disobey traffic rules. The Cameraman had hardly started work when the leader of the police team attacked her,” she said.