The Judicial Panel of Inquiry and Restitution found out by the Lagos government to research cases of police brutality and extrajudicial killings have commenced their 12th sitting.
At today’s hearing, four petitioners are expected to offer their testimonies including an extra hearing by Mr. Okoliagu Abunike who had alleged that he lost two of his teeth in an encounter with officers of the now-defunct Special Anti Robbery Squad (SARS).
Others include a lawyer, Olukoya Ogungbeje, Mr. Basil Chetal Ejiagwa, and Francis Idum.
The session started with the cross-examination of Mr. Abunike by the counsel to the police, Emmanuel Eze.
On October 27, Abunike, a father of 5, told the panel that in 2012, The Federal Special Anti-Robbery Squad (FSARS) operatives detained and tortured him for 47 days at their Ikeja office, without trial.
According to him, he had been invited to a police headquarters within the Ojo area of the state for a few clarifications over the disappearance of some goods at his former place of labor.
Upon honoring the invitation, he said he was immediately arrested and was handed over to the Special Anti-Robbery Squad in Ikeja.
“I was like what’s going on? and that they said there was a complaint against me from my boss that something happened, and goods got missing.
“I said well, my boss has got to come here in order that we will iron out whatever issues because something like that went on before and that they called me to travel back and resume (work), that it had been an error on their system. After we waited for the entire day, nothing happened. subsequent day, they brought me back to Ojo from Ikeja, with numerous threats.
“My boss didn’t even show up, then they started beating me, calling me a thief, fraudster, and everyone that. They paraded me around the whole Alaba International Market, they asked me to face straight in their vehicle, showing my face; they even took me to my church,” the petitioner said while narrating his ordeal within the hands of the safety operatives.