…As Gov Emmanuel harps on transparency, unity of purpose
Akwa Ibom state government has inaugurated an 8-man Judicial Panel of Inquiry to receive and investigate complaints of alleged police brutality, human rights violations and extrajudicial killings in the state.
The Panel is also mandated to evaluate and present evidence surrounding the circumstances and draw conclusions as to the validity of the complaints raised.
Inaugurating the Panel on Tuesday, 20th October 2020, at the Executive Council Chamber, Government House, Uyo, Governor Emmanuel tasked the panellists to live above board by being transparent and execute the task ahead by coming up with recommendations that will address the issues when implemented.
Governor Emmanuel said that the decision of the Executive Council to inaugurate the panel is premised on his determination to address the demands of the protesting youths during the recent #EndSARS protest in the state.
He commended the protesting youths for not taking laws into their hands while pressing home their demand for a reformed society and warned them against infiltration by hoodlums who may hijack the peaceful protest and wreck havoc on innocent citizens and public infrastructure.
“I advise the people to remain law-abiding and peaceful, you should not allow hoodlums to hijack the process because that common man selling Akara that hoodlums are going to attack is not the cause of the problem you know how he manages to get capital to start the business, the more peaceful we conduct ourselves to get our demands the better for everybody”, he advised.
He spoke on his resolve to respond to every demand of the protesting youths, explaining that having a few policemen who exhibit bad tendencies does not mean that all of them are bad.
“let me also say here that in every organization including the church, the bad eggs you notice are not more than 0.04%, you know bad apples they say to spoil the good ones even with that let us look at it in that direction that there are a few percentages of policemen in this country who are doing the rightful thing. Let us not throw the baby with the bathwater because at the end of the day we still need the police to protect lives and property in the state”, he appealed.
Chairman of the Panel, Rtd. Justice Ifiok Ukana, thanked Governor Udom Emmanuel for the confidence reposed on them and pledged their unalloyed commitment to study documents and make necessary recommendations to the state government.
Members of the panel are; Chairman, Rtd. Justice Ifiok Ukana, Secretary/Representative of State Attorney General, Mfon Edemekong Esq, Representative of Civil Society Organisations and Protesters is Manti Umoh.
Others are Representative of Civil Society Organisations, Harris Udoh, Representative of the Police, Barr. Bassey Essien while the Youths Representative is Barr. Omen Bassey.
The high point of the event was the signing of an Order backing the setting up of the Judicial Panel of Investigation by Governor Udom Emmanuel.