By Emma Amaize
ASABA- CENTRE for the Vulnerable and Underprivileged, CENTREP, a Delta State-based rights group, has accused the Presidency of taking too lightly the brutal murder of three serving police officers and a civilian by soldiers of the 93 Battalion, Takum, Taraba State with the marching orders it gave the Defence Headquarters to investigate the incident.
Executive Director of the group, Mr. Oghenejabor Ikimi, in a statement, Sunday, said the outrageous incident called for a judicial panel of inquiry and not a directive to the Defence Headquarters to look into the incident with a view to avoiding a repeat performance in the near future and to compensate the families of the fallen operatives and civilian.
“We believe that the marching order given to the Defence Headquarters by the Presidency to investigate the above incident is an indication that the Presidency is trivializing sensitive issues such as lack of synergy, inter- Agency rivalry and sabotage amongst her security outfits nationwide.
“The outcome of the investigation like previous ones initiated in the past would no doubt be swept under the carpet, hence our call for a judicial panel of inquiry to investigate the immediate and remote causes of the above incidence and to proffer solutions to prevent a re-occurrence in the nearest future,” the group said.
It added, “We are not oblivious of the killing of a Divisional Police Officer, DPO and his Divisional Crime Officer, DCO, by soldiers at a Police station in Badagry, Lagos State in the year 2011. The above incident was published in our national dailies and until date, no panel of enquiry was set up to investigate the above killings as the entire incident was buried under the carpet.”
“Many more infractions between soldiers and the police have since occurred thereafter, but in all, the incidents were swept under the carpet, hence our above clarion call,” CENTREP asserted.
Recall that three police officers attached to the Inspector General of Police, IGP Intelligence Response Team on investigation activities to Ibi, Taraba state were on their way back from a successful operation after arresting a kidnap kingpin, Alhaji Hamisu, when soldiers opened fire at the team and snuffed life out of them.