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FG trivialising EndSARS protesters’ demands ― Wike

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#ENDSARS in Rivers rally: What Wike told Rivers protesters
Governor Nyesom Wike of Rivers State.

By Rasheed Sobowale

The Governor of Rivers State, Nyesom Wike, has reacted to the direction of the National Economic Council, NEC that state governors should immediately establish state-based special security and human rights committee to supervise the newly formed police tactical units and all other security agencies.

In his recent reaction, the governor said the Federal Government is trivialising the demands of the ENDSARS protesters by directing state governors to take charge of Tactical Commands of the Police.

According to Wike; “State Governors cannot take charge of Tactical Commands because they cannot employ or discipline anyone who errs.

“Now the  Federal Government wants us to set up another commission of inquiry when the report of the last one we set up was not implemented.

Also speaking on the ENDSARS protest in Rivers State capital, Port Harcourt, Wike said; “I acted on intelligence to ensure that #EndSARS protest in Port Harcourt was not hijacked by miscreants. If I did not support it, I would not have addressed the protesters who are demanding a change in the way the Federal Government conducts the affairs of the country.”

In an earlier report, Vanguard published that rising from its monthly meeting in Abuja on Friday, the NEC presided over by Vice President Yemi Osinbajo, directed the immediate establishment of state-based judicial panels of Inquiry across the country to receive and investigate complaints of Police brutality or related extra-judicial killings, with a view to delivering justice for all victims of the dissolved SARS and other police units.

ALSO READ: What to know about Nigeria’s #EndSARS protests

The Council specifically resolved that state governors and the FCT Minister should take charge of interface and contact with the protesters in their respective domains.

According to NEC, the panels, which should be chaired by a respected retired State High Court Judge, should include representatives of youths, students, civil society organizations.

The idea of the Special Security and Human Rights Committee in all states of the Federation and the FCT, according to NEC, is to ensure that police formation and other security agencies in the state consistently protect the human rights of citizens.

Members of the special committee would also include representatives of youths, and civil society, while the head of Police tactical units in each of the state would also be a member of the committee.

On the judicial panel of inquiry, each state government was asked to set up the panel to be chaired by a retired High Court Judge, with other members selected by the state governor.

Other members of the panel are to include two representatives of civil society groups; one retired police officer of high repute; one youth representative; one student representative; and one representative of the State Attorney-General’s office and a representative from the National Human Rights Commission, NHRC.

‘’The terms of reference for the judicial panel is to receive and investigate complaints of Police brutality or related extra-judicial killings; evaluate the evidence presented/other surrounding circumstances, and draw conclusions as to the validity of the complaints; and recommend compensation and other remedial measures, where appropriate.

‘’The panel’s assignment should be concluded within a maximum of six months unless it shows convincing reasons the state governor should allow an extension.

‘’There would also be human rights public complaints team of between two to three persons to receive complaints on an ongoing basis. That team would be established by the special committee on security and human rights,’’ NEC stated.

It was resolved that each state government should also set up such a complaints office to which members of the public could relate by telephone or social media channels.

Vanguard News Nigeria.

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