Assault on photojournalist: Fashola orders investigation

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By Olasunkanmi Akoni & Monsurv Olowoopejo

Governor Babatunde Fashola of Lagos State has ordered  investigation into the alleged battering of a photojournalist, Mr. Benedict Uwalaka, of Leadership Newspaper, on Thursday, at the Lagos State University Teaching Hospital, LASUTH.

Uwalaka was allegedly attacked and beaten black and blue by mortuary attendants at LASUTH during the release of corpses of Dana plane crash victims to their relatives.

Speaking with State House correspondent, Fashola, who said he was horrified by the brazen act of barbarism displayed by the culprits, expressed unreserved apology to the victim and his media organization, assuring that he would ensure that those involved are brought to book.

In a related development, the Nigerian Union of Journalists (NUJ), Lagos State chapter  has threatened to press charges against the attackers, even as legal consultants and solicitors to Mr. Benedict Uwalaka have  petitioned Lagos State Commissioner for Police on the matter.

Harping on the enormity of the offence against the Journalists, Fashola said,” I was horrified really. I didn’t hear of the incidents until after the prayer when I got home and  I was trying to catch a piece of the news. I was really horrified at what I saw.

First of all, whatever that journalist may have done, there is nothing to provoke that kind of action. “I make an unqualified apology on behalf of our government to the journalist concerned and the media House, LEADERSHIP. I tender a very unreserved apology.

That is not us. I have since yesterday asked the chief security officer to find out the officers and the men involved. It happened on our premises somehow”. I am still not able to tell whether they are our staff or other organisation. Whatever the case may be, we will conduct our investigation and we will bring those people to justice.”

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