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Senator submits petition against police over killing of Journalist

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The Senate has received a petition over the killing of a journalist assigned to cover a protest in Abuja allegedly by officials of the Nigeria Police Force.

The petition was brought to the floor during the start of plenary by Abba Moro from Benue state.

According to a statement issued by Ezrel Tabiowo, a Special Assistant to the Senate President, the petition was referred by the Senate President, Ahmad Lawan, to the Committee on Ethics, Privileges and Public Petitions.

Mr Moro said the journalist, Alex Ogbu, on Tuesday, January 21, 2020, was shot on the head by a police personnel during a demonstration by members of the Islamic Movement in Nigeria in Abuja.

According to Mr Moro, an autopsy carried out on the body of the deceased journalist showed to the contrary that he died from bullet wound in the head.

“On Tuesday 21st January 2020, Mr. Alexander Ogbu, a peace loving man and journalist, was shot on the forehead by men of the Nigeria Police force with the intention to kill, and did kill him.

“This sad incident occurred at the scene of a protest led by members of the Shiite group in Abuja.

According to the lawmaker, “During the protest, another by-stander was shot on the leg despite having identified himself as a Vehicle Inspection Officer (VIO) and not a protester.”

“This was confirmed by the media and eyewitness account and further buttressed by the spokesperson of the FCT Command in media reports, that men of the Nigeria Police Force shot at protesters.

“Mr. Alexander Ogbu was shot and killed by trigger-happy policemen who used live ammunition to disperse protesters and ended up killing and maiming innocent citizens going about their legitimate businesses,” the petition read.

Mr Moro, while giving a summary of the petition, explained that “when the police insisted that it was not the police that killed him, the woman insisted and took the case to the hospital and postmortem was done and it was discovered that the man died of gunshot.

“And so Mr. President, the woman is insisting that the police having killed her husband and their breadwinner, to take responsibility for the upkeep of the family and of course, apologise to the family for taking away their bread winner.”

The President of the Senate, Ahmad Lawan, thereafter, sought clarification from Mr Moro as to whether the wife, who is the petitioner, is presently seeking Judicial remedy before any court.

In his response to the Senate President, the lawmaker disclosed that there was no suit before any court of law on the matter.

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