A group of armed soldiers in Asaba, Delta State, Nigeria’s South-South, were caught on camera beating two young men.
Harrison Gwamnishu, a human rights activist, posted on Twitter a video of the incident that occurred on Saturday.
One of the victims of the attack was sitting helplessly on a tarred road in the video, while three soldiers beat him up.
Though the young men were unarmed and seemed too frail and terrified to fight or resist them, the soldiers could be heard cocking their weapons.
Cars drove past the scene of the incident, while passers-by stood, screaming in protest, some distance away.
PREMIUM TIMES spoke to the survivor, who identified himself as Godson Obaigbena, a 28-year-old sociology graduate from Delta State University, Abraka, on Monday.
Mr Obaigbena is wearing dreadlocks. He said he’s into music making.
He said he was attacked by soldiers, about five of them because his car nearly struck another young man who was riding a motorcycle.
Mr. Obaigbena said, it was not his fault, but that of the other man whom he said was riding at top speed recklessly.
“I was just about coming down (from the car to find out if he was okay, some military personal started beating me, slapping me.
“They didn’t even allow me to explain, and the bike guy was fine, he was already up. He just stood up and picked his bike,” the young man told PREMIUM TIMES.
“One of the soldiers said to me, ‘I can kill you and nothing will happen’. He said he was going to throw away my corpse.’
Mr Obaigbena’s brother is another survivor of the attack. He is seen crying and telling the soldiers in the video that his brother (Obaigbena) is a “sickler,” as his brother is hit repeatedly by the soldiers.
Mr Obaigbena said after beating him, the soldiers searched his car and found nothing.
“They searched the bike guy and saw some pills on him, so he was high when he was driving. This is how they left me to leave,’ he said.
Mr. Obaigbena, who had suffered bruises from the beating, said he believed he would be killed by the soldiers. “I’m lucky to be alive,” he said.
It’s getting too much,” he said, “and they should put an end to the violence.
A spokesperson for the Nigerian army, Sagir Musa, did not respond to calls and a text message asking for his opinion.
Human rights violations by security forces in Nigeria seemed to have continued unabated, amid recent nationwide demonstrations by young Nigerians who demanded an end to police brutality.
A few days ago, some soldiers in Ibadan, Nigeria’s South-west, were caught on camera flogging one woman in public whom they accused of “indecent dressing.”
It was confirmed about a week ago that an unidentified soldier had attacked a commercial driver and tried to kill him on the Abuja-Kaduna road in north-central Nigeria for overtaking his vehicle.
In Delta State, soldiers last month reportedly forced a medical doctor to swim in the mud for “violating curfew.”
The recent assault incident in Asaba illustrates Nigerian citizens’ helplessness and the need for the Nigerian authorities to proactively resolve the country’s worsening human rights situation.
watch video below
— Harrison Gwamnishu (Behind Bars)🇳🇬🇺🇸 (@HarrisonBbi18) November 22, 2020