Pandemonium in NASS over ‘brutality’ by DSS operatives

Pandemonium engulfed the White House segment of the National Assembly (NASS) Friday morning over the brutalisation of two senior staff by personnel from the Department of State Services (DSS).

Trouble started for the two senior staff of the National Assembly at about 11:45am at the gate linking the Senate new building to the White House when they were asked to identify themselves by the DSS operatives manning the gate.

An eyewitness confirmed to Blueprint that the two staff, John Nnadi of the Senate Committee on Petroleum (Downstream) and Chris Odoh, a deputy director, had flashed their Identity cards to the DSS operatives, but were stopped for not identifying themselves ‘properly.’

Being senior staff of NASS, attempts made by them to proceed to the White House segment from the Senate new building were forcefully blocked by DSS operatives, which resulted in rough handling from both ends and outright physical assault from the DSS operatives.

Efforts made by passersby, including our reporter, to resolve the crisis infuriated the DSS operatives who, after being joined by four other personnel, descended heavily on the two affected staff by dragging John Nnadi and pushing the deputy director (Chris Idoh) to their office at the White House.

Miffed by the embarrassing scene, staff of the National Assembly from various offices at the White House, including the Mace-bearer in the Senate, spontaneously gathered at the front of the DSS office and threatened fire and brimstone if the two arrested senior staff were not released “immediately.”

However, the DPO in the National Assembly, Alex Annagu, and the Deputy Clerk to the Senate (Legislative), Mrs. Ilobah Isabella, hurriedly rushed to the scene to calm frayed nerves by appealing to everybody to return to their offices.

The DPO made further appeals to the brutalised staff and others to allow peace to reign as his office and that of the DSS were already comparing notes on what happened.

He said, “My appeal to all at this point, particularly Mr. John Nnadi, is that we should all return to our offices while John Nnadi goes to the clinic for medical check-up on any injury that may have been inflicted on him from the alleged physical assault.

“Gathering here and chanting solidarity songs will not right whatever wrongs that might have been committed, but going to the clinic for medical examination and possible establishment of any injury from the alleged assault, will help in establishing a case.”

The assaulted staff NASS thereafter proceeded to the clinic thus paving the way for the enraged crowd to disperse at about 12:35pm.