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Thursday, April 22, 2021

HURIDE petitions IGP over assault on journalist

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The Human Rights Defenders (HURIDE), Ebonyi State Chapter has petitioned the Inspector General of Police, Muhammad Adamu over a recent assault meted out on the Abuja correspondent of Blueprint Newspapers, Paul Okah by suspected cultists.

It was gathered that the journalist was attacked on the 23rd day of August, 2020 in the Afikpo home of an All Progressives Congress (APC) chieftain, Pharmacist Anthony Ekoh, during his visit in preparation for the burial of his late father and to celebrate the Afikpo New Yam festival.

The Chairman of HURIDE in Ebonyi State, Sam Oko Nweke, disclosed this on Sunday while presenting a copy of the petition to newsmen in Abakaliki.

He lamented the incessant attack and persecution of journalists in Ebonyi State, noting that the new attack was coming barely one month after a similar attack on the Ebonyi State correspondent of The Punch Newspaper, Edward Nnachi.

The HURIDE Chairman also narrated that the group had contacted Tony Ekoh, in whose compound the act was perpetrated, who acknowledged the presence of both Paul Okah and Mudi Erhenede and his followers in his compound on the fateful date, but said nobody notified him when Paul Okah was being attacked.

Oko Nweke, however, told journalists that eyewitnesses confirmed that one Emmanuel Ibiam Umeh first slapped Paul Okah before other boys joined him in manhandling the Blueprint journalist until he was rescued through the effort of a journalist with Unity FM Abakaliki, Unya Effor, who provided his car for Paul Okah to escape to safety.

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