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ENDSARS: Brutal Police officers’ in 12 states named as Lagos And Abuja top list

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ENDSARS: Brutal Police officers’ in 12 states named as Lagos And Abuja top list

ENDSARS: Brutal Police officers’ in 12 states named as Lagos And Abuja top list

Delta, Kaduna, Benue, Akwa Ibom, Rivers, Enugu, Imo, Ogun, Kwara, Kogi, Gombe make list

Lagos, FCT account for more than 50% of total compensations recommended for brutality, extrajudicial killing victims

‘Inspector, Sergeant, Corporal refused to release corpses of their victims for burial’

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By Levinus Nwabughiogu

Amid the controversy over police brutality in Nigeria, especially by the now-disbanded unit of the security agency called Special Anti-Robbery Squad (SARS), Lagos and Abuja, the Federal Capital Territory, have emerged tops on the list of states with ‘brutal policemen’, according to the Presidential Panel on Reform of SARS.

The panel, which called for and received 113 complaints on alleged human rights violations from across the country and 22 memoranda on suggestions on how to reform and restructure SARS and the police in general, sat in a public hearing and submitted its report to the Federal Government in November 2019.

It recommended 35 police officers for dismissal and 33 for dismissal and prosecution in 12 states and the FCT for alleged activities ranging from extrajudicial killing to illegal arrest, detention, biased investigation, torture, enforced disappearance, inhuman and degrading treatment, and violation of rights to fair hearing and dignity of the human person.

Many others were recommended for reduction in rank while compensations were proposed for their victims.

A public apology by the police to some of the victims or their families where such victims are deceased was also recommended.

It was not clear whether the list of indicted police officers was submitted to the government at that time but the National Human Rights Commission (NHRC) just submitted a list apparently from the work of the panel to the Attorney General of the Federation (AGF) and the Police Service Commission (PSC) for their respective actions.

Whereas the AGF is expected to prosecute officers recommended for trial based on the allegations against them, those for disciplinary actions will have their matters sorted out by the PSC.

ENDSARS: Brutal Police officers’ in 12 states named as Lagos And Abuja top list

Sources within the NHRC, who spoke to Sunday Vanguard, were optimistic that the list was getting the required attention in different quarters after the turmoil generated by #EndSARS protests for about two weeks last month.

The protests, which started as a civil action against police brutality, rocked the nation almost to its foundation after they were hijacked in some states, notably Lagos, Oyo, Edo and Rivers, by hoodlums who attacked public and private properties.

Consequently, states, in conjunction with the Office of VP Yemi Osinbajo, agreed to probe police/SARS brutality across the country by instituting judicial panels of inquiry.

Speaking on the work of the Presidential Panel on Reform of SARS, Mr. Anthony Okechukwu Ojukwu, the Executive Secretary of NHRC, told Sunday Vanguard, in an interview, last week: “In that report, about 35 people were recommended for dismissal by the police because of the role they had played while 33 were recommended for prosecution.

“Some others were recommended for demotion in rank while in some cases it was recommended that compensations of about N264million should be paid to victims.

“Then there were also recommendations where it was required that the police should reinvestigate some cases and then there were cases where officers who had auctioned people’s property to themselves and refused to surrender to the panel were also to be arrested and prosecuted”.

But a list said to have been submitted to the AGF and PSC, sighted by Sunday Vanguard at the weekend, named indicted officers in 12 states and the FCT.

Sunday Vanguard could not immediately ascertain whether the absence of petitions or sanctions for erring officers from the 24 other states means petitions were not received from the states or there were just no cases of SARS brutality there.

The ranks of the police officers ranged from Assistant Commissioner of Police (ACP), one of whom was accused of causing a building to be illegally demolished in Rivers State, to Constable.

ENDSARS: Brutal Police officers’ in 12 states named as Lagos And Abuja top list

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Another ACP in Abuja was recommended for dismissal and prosecution for unlawful confiscation of the property of a magistrate while a retired Deputy Commissioner of Police (DCP) was indicted in the same case.

The DCP was recommended for prosecution.

Also in Abuja, an Inspector, a Sergeant, and a Corporal were not only accused of extrajudicial killing, but they were also said to have refused to release the corpses of their victims to their families for burial.

The panel recommended their dismissal by PSC and prosecution by the AGF.

Meanwhile, state by state analysis of the list shows that, of the police officers accused of heinous crimes and recommended for dismissal, Lagos and Abuja take the lion’s share.

Of the 35 people recommended for dismissal by the panel because of the roles they had allegedly played in the heinous crimes, six are from Lagos while 12 are from Abuja, making a total of 18.

And of the 33 police officers recommended for prosecution, seven are from Lagos while nine are from Abuja, making a total of 16.

A total of 13 officers from Lagos (eight) and the FCT (five) were recommended for reduction in rank.

Similarly, Lagos and Abuja account for more than half of the compensations recommended for victims of SARS brutality across Nigeria (about N264million).

Compensations estimated for Lagos victims are N94million while the estimates for Abuja victims are N64.6million totaling N158.6million.

Find below the summary of the state by state breakdown of the list of the Presidential Panel on Reform of SARS.

  1. Akwa Ibom:

Dismissal and prosecution:

Four police officers, including an ASP, for inhuman and degrading treatment, violation of rights to fair hearing and dignity of human person

Compensation:

  1. 10million Naira each to two victims for inhuman and degrading treatment by the police
  2. 2million Naira by the police for biased investigation, torture, cruel, inhuman and degrading treatment leading to death in police custody to the family of Idoreyin Sunday Isong.

Public apology in national newspapers to four persons for inhuman and degrading treatment, violation of rights to fair hearing and dignity of the human person; biased investigation, torture, cruel, inhuman and degrading treatment leading to death in police custody

  1. Benue:

Compensation:

  1. 20million Naira for extrajudicial killings (right to life) to legal heirs and families of Agande and Olowe Adi
  2. 10million Naira for extrajudicial killings (right to life) to the wife and children of the late Emmanuel Tertsea Dia.

Investigation:

  1. To reveal the identities of the police officers involved in the heinous killing of Agande Adi and Olowe Adi.
  2. To reveal officers involved in an operation on September 9, 2016, around Akpehe area of Abu Shuluwa Road, Makurdi, State at about 7.30 pm in line with extant police rules and regulations. The investigation should identify the officers culpable for the death of the deceased and the roles played by senior police officers tasked with the duty of investigating the death
  3. Delta:

Dismissal and prosecution:

ASP for unlawful arrest, detention and extrajudicial killing

  1. Enugu:

Dismissal and prosecution:

Sergeant for alleged torture leading to death in custody

Reduction in rank:

Inspector and SP for alleged torture leading to death in custody

Compensation:

  1. 15m to the family of a deceased victim by the police (10m) and one firm (5m)
  2. 3m to a victim for alleged violation of right to property and extortion.
  3. Inspector to pay 100, 000 for alleged violation of right to property and extortion.
  4. FCT

Dismissal and prosecution:

  1. Three officers for extra-judicial killing (right to life and refusal to release corpse)
  2. ACP and DCP for right to property
  3. Seven officers for unlawful arrest, detention, torture, cruel, inhuman and degrading treatment; extrajudicial killing, unlawful arrest, detention and death in police custody; unlawful intimidation, harassment, arrest, detention, criminal assault, inhuman and degrading treatment and torture; cruel, inhuman and degrading treatment; alleged threat to life, extortion and confiscation of property; and unlawful arrest, detention, torture, inhuman and degrading treatmen

 

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Reduction in rank:

Five officers, including ASP, for unlawful arrest, cruel, inhuman and degrading treatment, and seizure of property, among other human rights infractions

Compensation:

  1. 10million Naira by the police for extra-judicial killing (right to life) and refusal to release corpse to the family of the late Comfort Hembe
  2. 2million Naira by the police for unlawful arrest, cruel, inhuman, degrading treatment and seizure of property to one Peter Keju
  3. 5million Naira by the police for right to property to Chief Magistrate Faga Ajim and return of car in good state or 900, 000 Naira for right to property by a retired DCP
  4. 2million Naira for right to property to Chief Magistrate Faga Ajim by the retired DCP.
  5. 2million Naira by the police for unlawful arrest and detention and enforced disappearance to the family of Usman Adebowale
  6. 10million Naira by the police for unlawful arrest, detention, torture, cruel, inhuman and degrading treatment, extra-judicial killing to the family of the late Mark Kajo.
  7. 10million Naira each by the police for unlawful arrest, detention and death in police custody to the families of Vincent Solomon Kantiok and Mohammed Awal
  8. 5million Naira by the police for unlawful intimidation, harassment, arrest, detention, criminal assault, inhuman and degrading treatment and torture of Oche Okede
  9. 64, 000 Naira to Oche Okede for unlawful intimidation, harassment, arrest, detention, criminal assault, inhuman and degrading treatment and torture by ASP Emmanuel Onyeneho
  10. 3million Naira for cruel, inhuman treatment of Mallam Umar Manu by the police.
  11. 1.6million Naira as damages and cost of six drums of engine oil illegally confiscated, unlawful arrest, detention and confiscation of properties of Jamiyu Egarawu by the police
  12. 1million Naira for extortion, unlawful arrest and detention of Qudus Adeleke by the police
  13. 25,000 Naira for extortion, unlawful arrest and detention of Qudus Adeleke by Insp. Julius Idowu
  14. Return of laptop or payment of 180, 000 as cost of the laptop, extortion, unlawful arrest and detention of Qudus Adeleke by Insp. Julius Idowu
  15. 2million Naira for alleged threat to life, extortion and confiscation of property of Samuel Okpanimo by the police
  16. 3million Naira for unlawful arrest, detention, torture, inhuman and degrading treatment of Olusegun Kayode by police.

Arrest and prosecution:

Retired Deputy Commissioner of Police for alleged right to property, illegal auction of vehicle and abuse of power.

  1. Gombe:

Reduction in rank:

Inspector for inhuman and degrading treatment

Compensation:

1million Naira each to two victims for inhuman and degrading treatment by the police

  1. Imo:

Dismissal and prosecution:

Seven police officers, including one CSP, two ASPs and three inspectors for alleged extrajudicial killing, unlawful arrest and detention threats, intimidation, unfounded allegations, unlawful seizure of property and blockage of accounts.

Compensation:

12million to three victims and family of next of kin

  1. Kaduna:

Dismissal and prosecution:

Two officers for torture, right to life and dignity of human person

Compensation:

10million Naira to Mrs Joy Okon (wife of the late John Okon) for torture, right to life and dignity of human person by the police

  1. Kogi:

Compensation:

10million Naira to the family of one late Adamu Haruna for torture and extrajudicial killing (right to life) by the police

  1. Kwara:

Investigation:

Into extra-judicial killing (right to life) and requisition of a coroner’s inquest into the death of unnamed victim

  1. Lagos

Dismissal and prosecution:

Six police officers, including two ASPs, for violation of right to life and alleged extra judicial killing, enforced disappearance, unlawful arrest and detention, torture, cruel, inhuman and degrading treatment, violation of right to personal liberty, extortion and violation of right to property.

Reduction in rank:

Eight, including a CSP, a DSP, four inspectors, recommended for punishment with reduction in rank for infractions ranging from alleged unlawful arrest and detention, and inhuman and degrading to extra-judicial killing arbitrary arrest and detention, cruel, inhuman and degrading treatment, and extortion

Compensation:

95million Naira to be paid by the police for violation of right to life and alleged extrajudicial killing to the families of three victims, alleged unlawful arrest and detention, and inhuman and degrading treatment and enforced disappearance.

  1. Ogun:

Dismissal:

Inspector for unlawful arrest, detention, violation of right to dignity of human person and extortion

Compensation:

Over 4million to be paid by the police for unlawful arrest, detention, violation of right to dignity of human person and extortion

  1. Rivers:

Dismissal:

ASP for unlawful arrest and detention and torture and inhuman and degrading human treatment

Reduction in rank:

ACP, four others for degrading treatment and extortion, and destruction of building and properties

Compensation:

  1. 5million to be paid by the police for unlawful arrest and detention and torture and inhuman and degrading human treatment and destruction of building and properties

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