A photojournalist with the Vanguard Newspapers attached to the Aso Rock Villa, Mr Abayomi Adeshida, was on Thursday morning beaten up by security details of Vice President, Yemi Osinbajo.
The incident took place at the State House Banquet Hall, Abuja, during the opening session of the Nigeria Diaspora Investment Summit organised by the Nigerians in Diaspora Commission, NiDCOM, chaired by Hon. Abike Dabiri-Erewa.
Narrating his experience to journalists, Adeshida said he was taking photographs of the Vice-President taking a tour of the exhibition stands at the event, when five personnel of the Department of State Services (DSS), suddenly pounced on him as Osinbajo was being presented a copy of a magazine as a souvenir at a particular stand.
Adeshida said he was not told his supposed infraction as he was not in any way obstructing the event or doing anything out of the ordinary before the security details started hitting him, dragged him over the floor, and damaged his professional camera, right in the presence of the Vice-President.
“I was shocked when these DSS started beating me for no apparent reason. They tore off my Presidential Villa accreditation tag on the shirt and dragged me on the floor while hitting me and kicking me.
“I believe they would have done much worse if not for the intervention of the Vice-President’s Aide-de-Camp (ADC), who I noticed was making hand movements for them to leave me alone.
“I am feeling pains all over my body and a particular severe pain on my right leg on which I don’t even know what they hit me with”, the Adeshida before he headed for the hospital for treatment.
No other aides of the Vice-President made efforts to stop the humiliation of the journalist in the presence of Osibanjo, who may have been embarrassed by the situation.
The incident happened a day after 35 aides of the Vice-President were reportedly sacked on the orders of President Muhammadu Buhari, who is away on a private visit to the United Kingdom.