By Dirisu Yakubu, Abuja
Foremost civil rights advocacy group, the Human Rights Writers Association of Nigeria, HURIWA, Wednesday, called for an end to alleged incessant cases of torture, brutality, and extrajudicial executions by men of the Nigeria Police Force.
This is even as the group threatened to make its concern known to the Queen of England and Head of the Commonwealth of Nations, Queen Elizabeth II for possible expulsion of Nigeria over what it called the extrajudicial killings of Nigerians.
Addressing a news conference in Abuja, Comrade Emmanuel Onwubiko, national coordinator of the group said “the lawlessness of officers and operatives of the Nigerian Police Force” has now reached an unacceptable level and called on President Muhammadu Buhari to urgently bring to an end the ugly development.
Onwubiko also faulted the federal government’s handling of the policing model in the land, saying, “It is unfortunate that President Muhammadu Buhari has treated with kid gloves the critical issue of the organised use of torture, extralegal execution of Nigerians as the tactics of policing in Nigeria in spite of all the inherent and attendant breaches of the constitutionally protected freedoms of the citizens,”
According to HURIWA, “The Nigerian Police Force has decidedly set up units whose duties are just to extort Nigerians, arrest and detain innocent people,” noting that in its possession are two related matters of the recklessness of the men in uniforms.
In a letter titled, “A complaint against a manifest act of insubordination, indiscipline, disobedience to lawful directives of the Inspector General of Police and the continuous harassment of Ozor Joseph Nnaji, His Royal Highness Igwe Mike Nnukwu and others by the Special Tactical Squad, STS: A notification of an ugly and dangerous trend in the institution of the of the Nigerian Police Force,” the group through its counsels said, “We continue to act as the solicitors to the concerned kindred families of Amechi Awkunana and Obeagu communities of Enugu South Local Government Area of Enugu State, both of whom shall for the purposes of this complaint be referred to, as our clients and upon whose express mandate and instruction we forward this complaint to you.
“With every sense of humility sir, we refer to our letter to you dated 15th day of June, and received by your office on the 16th day of June 2020 respectively as well as your directive, as contained in your letter to the Commissioner of Police (Legal) with reference number CB:7000/IGP.SEC/ABJ/VOL.485/18 also dated the 16th day of June 2020.
The said letter and your directive are hereby attached for easy reference and wish to notify you of the very ugly and pathetically disappointing alliance between the Special Tactical Squad with the D9 Section of the State Criminal Investigation Department of Enugu State Police Command aimed at bringing disrepute to your most respected office.
“Following your directive under reference, we have keenly followed same up with the legal section of your office and discovered to our chagrin that all efforts made by the Assistant Commissioner of Police, ACP Effiong Asuquo to retrieve the case files from the Special Tactical Squad (STS) in accordance with the said directive have been brazenly frustrated by the Special Tactical Squad, STS), and which STS has, rather than submitting the case files concerning our client’s various land cases, has handed same over to D9 section of the Enugu State Police Command for purposes considered to be antithetical to the ethics of policing and a manifest anathema to the discipline inherent in the Nigeria Police Force.”
The group called on the Inspector General of Police “to prevail on the STS and D9 to hand over all the case files related to the original complaints to the office of Commissioner of Police (legal) for consolidation and harmonised investigation as you had early directed.”
HURIWA further drew the attention of the IGP to the “kidnapping, sexual violations and extralegal execution of Youth Corps member, Miss. Ifeoma Stella Abugu,” allegedly by agents of the state.