Crimes/Tragedy

Gunmen raid Abuja THISDAY office

THISDAY Office

Some unknown gunmen raided the Abuja office of one of Nigeria’s major news outlets, THISDAY in the early hours of Thursday.

The gunmen, who were confirmed to be about nine in number, arrived at the premises of the company in Jabi District at about 3 a.m. and assaulted some of the its production staff and private security guards on duty.

Relaying the account, the newspaper’s Abuja Bureau Chief, Iyobosa Uwugiaren Iyobosa, told PREMIUM TIMES that the gunmen accessed the building through the route they came when the organisation was attacked about 10 years ago.

In a twin attack, the newspaper offices in Abuja and Kaduna were bombed by suicide bombers on April 26, 2012, killing 11 persons and destroying the newspaper’s multi-million properties.

“The same route they passed in 2012 was the same route they passed on Thursday to enter into the premises. For about 45 minutes, they were in the premises, holding everyone to ransom.

“The people they met were the production staff – those preparing newspapers for circulation that morning. They asked them all to lie down and threaten to kill if they alerted the police.

“They left through the same route, they didn’t take anything but according to our private guard, they said they (gunmen) threatened to come back,” Mr Uwugiaren narrated to this newspaper on Friday.

He said he could not precisely link the raid to any of the newspaper’s political foes or who it might have offended in their story updates.

“We have reported the case to police at Utako for investigation but from what the police were trying to say, they claimed it was just an armed robbery without an attempt to investigate the matter,” Mr Iyobosa said in disgust.

He argued that if the incident was indeed an armed robbery the gunmen would not have left without taking a single thing all through the raid and harassment of the paper’s staff members.(Premium Times)

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