By Charmaine Poriambep
The National Capital District Police Boss is disappointed over the lack of media support towards police work.
In a media conference today, the Metropolitan Superintendent Commander Gideon Ikumu said the media continues to do one-sided reporting and does not acknowledge or promote police achievements and challenges.
The media conference stemmed from an incident involving one of EMTV’s staff.
Richard Magei was picked up by police at five mile “24 market”, after police saw him using his phone to film them.
An eye witness recounted the incident:
“Yesterday they (Police) came and got my esky containing soft drinks and as they were trying to load the esky onto the police car I came and argued with them.”
While the eye witness was arguing with the officers, Richard who was visiting family in the area was filming the argument.
“They went and hit him on the head, put him into the Police car, and slapped him again on the head.”
According to Metropolitan Superintendent Commander, Gideon Ikumu, the police were on COVID-19 enforcement duties.
Ikumu added Richard looked suspicious because of his appearance.
“We thought he was an ordinary person because of the way he was dressed; scruffy and the way he was taking photos was sneaky,” says Ikumu.
“Police has the power to arrest and detain any person(s) who has committed and about to commit, for questioning.”
He said police were disappointed that within an hour of detaining Richard, the media went frenzy referring to a post, made by EMTV Online team, when they couldn’t reach Richard.
“Police took him into one of the tents at Unagi Oval and within less than a hour there was a media hype.
“There was already a rumour of a kidnapping done by police in broad daylight.”
He further said media should be working closely with police to also promote and educate the public on the good work of the police.
Ikumu said such bias reporting is not helping the police at all with COVID-19 awareness and enforcement.
Residents at the five-mile “24 market” where Richard was filming said while they respect the work of the police in enforcing covid19 protocols, they do not agree with the police approach.
They say, it’s confusing when one group of police allows them to sell betel nut but must wear face masks, another group of police, chases them.
Richard Magei was released late on Friday afternoon, as the Met Supt said, after detaining him and questioning him, police found that he did not commit any crime or was about to commit a crime.