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December 15, 2020

Police brutality: Court orders Police to drag Abba Kyari, others to NHRC anti-SARS unit

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By Tordue Salem, Abuja

The Chairman, Independent Investigative Panel on Human Rights Violations by the defunct special Anti-Robbery Squad (SARS) and other units of the Nigerian police, Justice Sulieman Galadima(rtd) has ordered the police to produce the Commander of Inspector General of Police (IGP) Intelligence Response Team (IRT), DCP Abba Kyari and Inspector Vincent Makinde before the panel in a case of alleged arbitrary arrest, detention, cruel inhuman and degrading treatment involving Mr. Rapheal Tersoo and Moses Mfe.

In his submission, counsel to the victim’s Mike Usahfa narrated how his clients Mr.Raphel Tersoo and Moses Mfe were subjected to inhuman and degrading treatment by the police since 2019.

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Mr Usahfa told the panel that his clients were arrested on the 22 of November 2019 in new GRA Makurdi Benue state and that after spending a week at the Makurdi zonal command headquarters of the Nigerian police, they were transferred to Abuja and have since been in detention.

Utasha said since the arrest of his clients they have not been arraigned before any court of Law and that all attempts to secure their bail were rebuffed by inspector Makinde who insisted that the sum of N1million Naira must be paid before they could get bail.

As for Moses Mfe, Mr Utasha said that his whereabouts is still unknown but that he was reliably informed that he was shot in the course of his arrest and sustained an injury and has not been allowed to access any form of medical care, adding that he fears that he may have been extra-judicially killed.

Utasha further prayed the panel to make an order releasing them conditionally or unconditionally in the interest of justice. His second prayer before the panel is that the police should be compelled to produce Mr Moses Mfe.

On hearing the submission, Justice Galadima directed the head of the police Legal team at the panel, DCP James Idachaba to ensure that the commander IGP-IRT DCP Abba Kyari and Investigating police officer IPO Inspector Vincent Makinde appear before the panel to make a public presentation of everything that transpired in the course of arrest, investigation and how the victims were subsequently remanded at the Suleja correctional services.

In his response, the lead counsel of the police Legal team, James Idachaba told the panel that” in all his years in practice it has come to him as a rude shock to hear that the suspects were remanded in prison by the police”.

He said it is the court that order suspects to prison; the police he noted will need time to get an accurate response so as not to mislead the panel.

The case was adjourned to Thursday 17 December 2020 for further hearing.

Vanguard News Nigeria