Despite the change in the leadership of the Department of State Services, DSS, and promise of a new era by new Director-General Matthew Seifeya, its operatives, attached to the Osun State Deputy Governor, Mrs Titi Laoye-Tomori, Monday night in Osun State, attacked journalists returning from an assignment.
The journalists, who were part of Governor Rauf Aregbesola’s press crew, were said to be returning from the commissioning ceremony of a project at Oke-ila, Ifedayo Local Government area of the state when the incident happened, Daily Post reports.
Trouble reprtedly started when an operational vehicle carrying the operatives missed the entourage and it tried to manoeuvre its way. It made attempts to overtake the vehicle carrying newsmen at a dangerous bend of the road, which the driver resisted.
The operatives later waylaid the press team with their operational vehicle marked AR 482 KUJ, during which an operative, identified as Williams, reportedly pointed his gun at the journalists and threatened to kill them.
According to the newspaper, in the ensuing melee, a senior reporter in the office of the Governor, Mr Adekunle Alabi, alongside the Channels Television cameraman, identified as Adewale were beaten to a pulp, while his camera worth N2.5m was damaged beyond repair.
A journalist with Osun Defender, who was part of the team told Daily Post that the operatives deliberately barricaded the road against the press crew, which eventually resulted into altercation.
He added that an operative, earlier identified as Williams, with other two security personnel, eventually descended on some journalists and damaged their equipment in the process.
Daily Post recalled that operatives of the DSS had on September 11, 2017, brutalised two journalists, Timothy Agbor of The Point Newspaper, and Toba Adedeji of Osun Defender at the premises of the Osun State House of Assembly in Osogbo.
The action, which elicited huge condemnation all over the country, was later settled as the DSS authority apologised to the leadership of the NUJ and also paid for the damaged gadgets.
Acting President Yemi Osinbajo had recently sacked Lawal Daura as DSS DG and replaced him with Mr. Seifeya, who had promised to end to impunity and rights abuse.
Nigerians see the DSS under Daura as the darkest era in the democratic history of the agency, due to his disdain for the rule of law, disobedience to court orders and human rights abuses.