DSS Ransacks Reuters Correspondent’s Home In Bayelsa, Seize Laptop, Mobile Phones, Others

DSS-maskedArmed operatives of the Department of State Security (DSS) have invaded the Bayelsa home of Mr. Tife Owolabi, the correspondent of international news agency, Reuters.

The operatives, who were said to have accused the agency’s correspondent of espionage, seized his laptop and other electronic gadgets.

The security operatives, armed to the teeth, were said to have searched the home of Owolabi for over four hours, claiming to be acting on orders from Abuja.

After the search, the operatives left with the mobile telephones of the Mr. Owolabi and those belonging to his wife, Jane.

It was gathered that the invasion followed an invitation for a brief chat extended to the Reuters correspondent on Friday.

It was learnt that the correspondent was quizzed for hours and later released to the state chairman of Nigerian Union of journalists (NUJ), Mr. Tare Akono.

Owolabi who confirmed the development in a text message, said: “The DSS men stormed my apartment on Saturday to conduct a search and claimed it was based on an order from Abuja. The DSS men claimed that I am unpatriotic owing to my job and relationship with the Thomas Reuters.

“They claimed that they gathered that I sent or planning to send “negative” report to the outside world. I believe it is a deliberate clampdown on international journalists. All my working tools, including gadgets, cameras, laptops, iPad and hard drives, are with them. I was asked to report back on Monday (today)”.