NSCDC, NMA on Warpath over Shooting of Doctor in Bayelsa

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Emmanuel Addeh in Yenagoa

The Nigeria Security and Civil Defence Corps (NSCDC) and the Nigerian Medical Association (NMA) in Bayelsa are set for a showdown following the shooting of a medical doctor, his wife and children who allegedly ran over a stray dog while driving to work.

Though the dog was unhurt, the overzealous NSCDC operatives reportedly wounded the medical doctor who is currently receiving treatment in an undisclosed hospital.

There was no fatality during the attack, but the operatives were said to have riddled the doctor’s car with bullets, before dragging him away and physically assaulting him.

Yesterday, the Bayelsa Command of the NSCDC said it was investigating the allegation of misuse of firearms against the two personnel, promising to bring them to book if indicted.

The NMA which accused the operatives, Jude Akpoghomhe and Ogodo Richman, of harassing and shooting Dr. Bekewari Sampou, described the action as condemnable.

Also, the National Association of Resident Doctors (NARD, through its spokesman, Asinobi Ugoeze, said the shooting was against all ethos of civility.

“In a brazen disregard for the rule of law, ethos of civility and human life the doctor was later bundled into the NSCDC office where he was further pummeled to just within the confines of consciousness. As law abiding citizens, we view this incident as an affront on civil liberties that all our security personnel should stand for”, NARD said.
But Desmond Agu, the Commandant of the Bayelsa Command of the NSCDC said the command had already received a petition forwarded by the state chapter of the Nigerian Medical Association (NMA) on the matter.

“We assure you that if the operatives are indicted, they will never go unpunished”, he said yesterday, adding that the NSCDC viewed the incident as disturbing, since it could cast doubts on its integrity.

“In discharging our mandate, which is clearly spelt out, we emphasise strict adherence to the principles of human rights and the rule of law. Our officers and men are trained to observe these principles and are constantly reminded to apply restraints, especially in their dealings with the public”, he said.

He added that a seven-member committee to be headed by Deputy Commander GC Anyanwu of the Intelligence and Investigations department of the command had been set up.
“I have assured them that the matter will be dealt with and they attested to the cordial working relationship we have enjoyed over the years”, Agu noted.

He said he would seek to deepen the friendship and partnership with the people in the organisation’s efforts to protect critical national assets located in Bayelsa.