Personnel of the Nigerian police and the Department of State Service recruited armed thugs to infiltrate the supporters of the leader of Indigenous People of Biafra, Nnamdi Kanu, to attack human rights activist, Omoyele Sowore, and some journalists during Kanu’s trial at the Federal High Court Abuja, SaharaReporters has learnt.
At the resumed hearing of the trumped-up amended 15-count charge against the IPOB leader by the Nigerian government on Tuesday, some supporters had converged on the Federal Ministry of Justice premises as early as 8am in solidarity with their leader.
In what can be described as a show of force by the lawless armed DSS Operatives and the police, the security agents cordoned off the perimeter and blocked all the access roads leading to the court promises.
Some journalists, whose names were not in the accredited media list, were also denied access into the courts premises.
After a heated argument ensued between the media and the security personnel, the journalists decided to maintain a distance from the DSS operatives as they mounted their cameras in front of Bayelsa House to enable them get their shots.
WATCH: Divisional @PoliceNG Officer Abdullahi Abubakar Hassan âBig Boyâ Who Assaulted @YeleSowore In 2021 Caught On Tape, Again, Rescuing Thugs Who Attempted To Assassinate Activist During Nnamdi Kanuâs Trial https://t.co/IDZME64CzJ pic.twitter.com/WBNHTzTzGp
— Sahara Reporters (@SaharaReporters) January 22, 2022
Meanwhile at this point, a DSS operative believed to have knowledge of the game plan and infiltration told the journalists to stay away from the IPOB supporters and not to mingle with them to avoid some hoodlums, hiding among them.
It was gathered that the security personnel had told the thugs to take advantage of the IPOB supporters who were not well coordinated and organised to wreak havoc on Sowore as soon as he arrived at the location.
But the impostors were said to be disappointed when the activist did not show up on Tuesday as planned.
Sources who spoke to SaharaReporters said that on Wednesday, day 2 of the trial, the Divisional Police Officer of the Federal Secretariat Police Station, CSP Abdullahi Abubakar Hassan, allegedly recruited some thugs to carry out the hatchet job with the help of some police officers who were in mufti.
SaharaReporters gathered that the latest attack which is the fourth on the activist was coordinated by the FCT Criminal Investigation Department and the DSS, and the DPO was physically present in each case.
A black jeep was said to be parked at the other side of the road close to the location where the roadblock was mounted by the police believed to be working in cahoots with the attackers who also disguised as security operatives.
Some of the thugs were said to have come out of the vehicle upon sighting Sowore and infiltrated the crowd that was cheering the activist after he was turned back by the DSS.
The hoodlums who had already concealed knives and machetes in their clothes were joined by a few others who emerged from the other side of the road and attacked people indiscriminately.
Sowore who was about to address journalists who had set up their cameras at the other side of the road was attacked but escaped by the whiskers.
Meanwhile, some supporters of the activist and IPOB leader, Kanu, in an attempt to ward off the attack on the activist, were seriously injured thereby forcing the assailants to descend on journalists covering the scene.
The thugs, who also took the advantage to snatch cameras and mobile phones, were chased by Sowore’s supporters, which led to the arrest of one of them who was beating up a journalist in attempt to steal his camera.
He was beaten up by the crowd upon his arrest by the crowd but was later rescued by the DPO Abdullahi Abubakar Hassan who had initially watched the attackers to perpetrate the dastardly act.
Abubakar who later rescued the arrested thug from the crowd disguised as if he was arresting him as he made two attempts to shoot in the air but had his service pistol jammed.
A Joint Security Task Force, who arrived at the scene after they attackers had fled, fired teargas canisters at the IPOB supporters and dispersed them.
The task force which included the police, army, DSS, the air force, the Civil Defence Corps, and the navy had been patrolling the perimeter of the court on surveillance but were nowhere to be found when the sponsored thugs invaded the court.
A man believed to be a policeman who participated in the attack was also sighted while changing his cloth under a tree.
The Spokesperson of FCT Police Command, DSP Adeh Josephine, did not respond to the message sent to her mobile phone by journalists when contacted for reaction if the police would prosecute those arrested in connection with the attack.
The FCT Commissioner of Police, Babaji Sunday, also downplayed the attack when he was asked by journalists during a press conference on Wednesday.
Sunday who was evasive on the question said there no clash between police and protesters and he declined comment on the attack on the activist and journalists.
SaharaReporters had on Tuesday reported how the security operatives granted access to pro-government protesters who stormed the court wielding national flags.
The protesters were allowed to converge directly in front of the court singing anti IPOB songs while the protesters loyal to the Nnamdi Kanu were chase away.
It would be recalled that Sowore was arrested after he was beaten on July 26, 2021 while attending Kanu’s trial and his mobile phones and gadgets seized before he was taken to the Federal Secretariat Police Station.
He was also attacked on October 21, 2021 by the hoodlums at the premises of the court in front of armed DSS operatives who brought them.
The third attack took place on December 2, 2021 when thugs wielding dangerous weapons invaded the court in attempt to assassinate him
smashed his vehicle with stones.
On December 2, the DSS added to the already swelling list of attacks against @YeleSoworeâs liberty on court premises.#RevolutionNow #FreeSowore
FULL VIDEO: https://t.co/uoqUTxheQl pic.twitter.com/vptFY9Ov7Z
— Sahara Reporters (@SaharaReporters) December 5, 2021
Sowore has been one of the vocal voices condemning the re-arrest and repatriation of Kanu to Nigeria.
He had called for the unconditional release of the leader of the separatist group, who was abducted in Kenya and forcefully returned to Nigeria.