Unknown gunmen shoot Owei, AIT reporter in Bayelsa

Onisofie Owei, a broadcast journalist with the Africa Independent Television (AIT), was attacked by suspected armed robbers on Friday in Yenagoa, the capital of Bayelsa State.

Owei covers the Bayelsa State Government House for AIT. She was said to have been shot at Edepie area of Yenagoa, on her way from a church service.

Her attackers carted away her handbag, containing her mobile phones and other valuables, before escaping.

Reports say Owei was rushed to the hospital by a kind-hearted Nigerian, who, coincidentally, is married to a journalist.

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Some of her colleagues and other members of the Nigeria Union of Journalists (NUJ), Bayelsa State chapter, paid her a visit at the hospital, and reported that she was still in a critical condition and she hadn’t talked since.

Asinim Butswat, Public Relations Officer of the Bayelsa State Police Command, confirmed the incident, adding that an investigation into the incident was already underway.

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This is the second time in 2017 that a journalist is being attacked by unknown gunmen.

In April, Famous Giobaro, a journalist working with Radio Bayelsa, was shot dead by suspected gunmen who attacked his residential house at about 5 am on Sunday, the 16th.

He was reportedly shot in the stomach while the attackers left without taking anything from the house, and without attacking any other person in the neighbourhood.

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The killing triggered a protest by all the journalists in the state, who urged the state government to step up efforts to secure lives and properties in the state.

At that time, Butswat, the police spokesman, had promised that the force would do all in its power to apprehend Giobaro’s killers, but nothing has been heard ever since.

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