Three Nigerian police officers in Enugu, South East Nigeria, illegally confiscated an iPhone from a bus passenger and afterward assaulted the young man when he insisted on getting back his phone.
The incident happened on Saturday at about 10 a.m. near a popular bus stop, Kenyatta bus stop, in Enugu city.
A video of the assault, circulated on Twitter, has prompted a police investigation into the incident.
The victim, identified as Justice Obasi, is said to be an interior designer in Enugu.
Mr Obasi is seen in the video insisting that the unidentified police officers give him back his iPhone 6 before two of the officers, armed with rifles, started kicking and punching him.
“Oga, give me my phone, wetin I do,” Mr Obasi shouted repeatedly in Pidgin English as the officers kept assaulting him.
Mr Obasi told PREMIUM TIMES, Sunday, he did not know why the officers took on him.
“The thing was like a dream to me,” he said.
“I was coming to my office yesterday morning. On reaching the bus stop, the policemen stopped our bus. After the finished collecting N50 (from the bus driver), they said I should come down (I was sitting in the front seat), they searched me and searched my bag. They searched some other guys inside the bus,” Mr Obasi said.
“Since the bus stop is close to my office, I said let me continue the journey on my leg.
“One of the policemen ran after me and shouting that I should come back. They said I should bring my phone, they held me on my belt,” he said.
The officers slapped me and forcefully collected the phone when I was reluctant to hand it over, Mr Obasi said. He said the officers hit him with a rifle.
According to Mr Obasi, it took the intervention of a man who claimed to be a retired police officer before he was given back his phone and allowed to walk away.
Mr Obasi told PREMIUM TIMES he is in the hospital receiving treatment after his encounter with the police.
He said the officers who assaulted him are serving at Uwani police station in Enugu and that he could identify them.
“The IGP has ordered investigations into this trending video with a view to uncovering the identity of the erring cops and bringing them to book,” the police tweeted on Sunday via its Twitter account @PoliceNG.
“The IGP condemns all forms of brutality and abuse of human rights,” it added.