Police Killed My Brother In Cell, Detained His Corpse-Man Tells Panel

One Mr. Boyo Adesina has accused the police of allegedly torturing his brother, Olaoluwa Bolarinwa, to death in detention.

The accused police officers, were those attached to the Inspector General of Police Tactical Squad, in Itele, Ado-Odo/Ota Local Government area of Ogun State.

Adesina appeared on Thursday before the Ogun Judicial Panel of Investigation set up by Governor Dapo Abiodun as demanded by the End SARS protesters.

The Lagos resident told the panel that his brother was arrested on March 29, 2020 in Ibadan by some men of the IGP tactical squad.

According to him, Olaoluwa was initially detained for a night at Mokola Police Station in Ibadan, the Oyo State capital.

Thereafter, he explained that his brother was taken away to an unknown destination, which he said put their family in trouble as they moved from one police station to another to know his whereabouts.

“I was told he was moved from Mokola to Ayobo in Lagos State. Getting to Ayobo police station, they checked the incident register but couldn’t find him. I went back to Mokola and I was told that it was written in the incident register that he had been transferred to Obada in Abeokuta, Ogun State. He was transferred by a policeman nicknamed ‘Ijoba System’,” Adesina stated.

The distraught man said he also visited the police station at Obada, but could not find his late brother.

It was learnt that Adesina got the said Ijoba System’s phone number from one Oreoluwa Abiona, who was also arrested the same day Olaolauwa was arrested.

According to the petitioner, the police officer, who he described as the IPO of the case, told him on phone that Olaolauwa did not commit any crime.

He narrated that the officer said the tactical squad was only using the deceased to track a suspect known as Bosun, with a promise that he would be released soon.

The man recalled how he travelled from Lagos to Ogun on several occasions to see his brother, but without success.

“We went to Ayobo again and an officer told us to go to Itele. I narrated my story to someone we met there. They brought out their incident register and the police officer told us that there was no record of Olaoluwa.

“Later, we were told that he had been moved to Abuja, that we should go home; that was in the first week of April 2020. They said they will call us after the COVID-19 lockdown to come over to Abuja.

“When I didn’t hear from them, I went to Itele again and I saw the head of the tactical squad, one Toyin Omosebi, who said she had been sick and didn’t know much about the case,” the panel was told.

The bereaved brother said he called the police officer known as Ijoba System on the phone again and narrated his ordeals to him.

This time, he said the policeman asked him to return to Itele the following day.

“I called Ijoba System over the phone again; I prayed and begged him to tell me where my brother was. He told me to return to Itele the following day.

“When I went there, the officers spoke to Ijoba System on the phone. They brought out the incident register and I saw Olaoluwa’s name.

“Thereafter, I met Toyin Owosebi. She asked me if Olaoluwa had been sick before, I said no. She said my brother was an armed robber, I said it was not possible. Then, she told me my brother died three days after he was arrested.

“I know they tortured my brother to death inside the cell. This is unfair. My brother left behind a wife and three children. He is also survived by an aged mother. Who will cater to them?” the petitioner lamented.

He appealed to the panel to ensure the release of his brother’s corpse, while also asking that the policemen involved in the case be prosecuted.

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Global Condemnations Trail Shootings, Rights Violations

South Africa

Hundreds of people took to the streets in South Africa last Wednesday over the shooting of protestors on Tuesday night.

The demonstrators draped in the national flag of Nigeria and chanting liberation slogans marched to Abuja’s embassy in Pretoria carrying banners reading “End police brutality”.

Another group of about 400 people in Cape Town, mostly Nigerian nationals, vowed to continue picketing until there was change in Nigeria.

Well-known South African rap star AKA voiced solidarity with the people of Nigeria, saying: “How can people shoot to KILL their own countrymen and women?”

South African opposition party, the Economic Freedom Fighters (EFF), pledged its “moral and political solidarity” with Nigerians and called on the government to rein in its army and security services.

“The EFF salutes the young lions of Nigeria in their resolve to graduate their successful fight against police brutality under the banner of #ENDSARS,” it said in a statement.

Both groups called on the African Union and the Economic Community of West African States to send a strong message to Nigerian President Muhammadu Buhari to immediately end crackdown on protesters.

United States

The United States of America’s Secretary of State, Mike Pompeo has demanded the prosecution of those involved in the shooting of unarmed protesters at the Lekki toll plaza.

Secretary Mike Pompeo, in a tweet, said the United States strongly condemns the incidents of military forces firing on unarmed protestors in Lagos.

He extends his condolences to the victims of the violence and their families and demands that those involved should be held to account under the law.

Also, former vice president of the United States of America, candidate of the Democratic Party for next month’s presidential election, Joe Biden, has called on President Muhammadu Buhari to stop using the military against peaceful protesters. 

 Biden, also called on the United States government to stand with Nigerians.

He said, “I urge President Buhari and the Nigerian military to cease the violent crackdown on protesters in Nigeria, which has already resulted in several deaths. My heart goes out to all those who have lost a loved one in the violence.”

“The United States must stand with Nigerians who are peacefully demonstrating for police reform and seeking an end to corruption in their democracy. I encourage the government to engage in a good-faith dialogue with civil society to address these long-standing grievances and work together for a more just and inclusive Nigeria”, his statement read.

United Nations

United Nations (UN) has condemned the military attacks on youths protesting police brutality in Nigeria, urging an immediate end.

It enjoined the Federal Government to respect peaceful protests and freedom of assembly nationwide.

The global agency made its position known via separate statements by the SecretaryGeneral, António Guterres and his deputy, Amina Mohammed.

A  release issued by his spokesman, Stéphane Dujarric, called on the security forces to exercise maximum restraint in the policing of the demonstrations.

According to Guterres, UN has been following the protests from the onset. He pledged the readiness of his organisation to support the most populous black nation in addressing the issue at hand.

On her part, Deputy Secretary-General  Amina Mohammed, who called for a cessation to human rights violations in the country, said: “I join the UNSG in stressing the importance of respect for peaceful protests and freedom of assembly, and call on the security forces to exercise maximum restraint.”

European Union

The European Union and the Swedish Embassy in Nigeria have condemned the killing of the campaigners.

A statement by the High Representative/Vice President of the EU, Josep Borrell, sought arrest and trial of the perpetrators.

He stressed that it was important for the current administration to deliver on its promised reforms.

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