Lagos Judicial Panel Resumes Sitting; Police Brutality

The Lagos State Judicial Panel of Inquiry investigating the Lekki tollgate incident and other SARS related abuses and matters on Friday continued its sitting and the cross-examination of petitioners. 

During the cross-examination of the petitioners, the panel will continue its hearing from Ndukwe Ekekwe who alleged that the officers of the defunct Special Anti-Robbery Squad (SARS) beat him up and then transferred him to their office in Ikeja.

Beyond the beating, Ekekwe said he was stabbed at different parts of his body by the officers, and later taken to his shop at Alaba where they broke in and started auctioning his products.

Thereafter, as he started shouting for help, he said the officers took him up a two-story building and threw him down – an incident which caused him to break his spine.

In its last sitting, the panel also heard the case of a couple, Okechukwu Obechina and Nzube Obechina.

Mrs Nzube Obiechina during her first appearance before the panel on October 31st said she lost her two-month pregnancy while being detained for 22 days at the Special Anti-Robbery Squad (SARS) in Ikeja, Lagos State.

Before its last sitting, the panel had gone on a one-week break following the absence of youth representatives.

Panel chairman and a retired Chief Judge of Lagos, Justice Doris Okuwobi had adjourned on November 7 when its proceedings were disrupted over the inability to form a quorum due to absence of two youth members protesting against the freezing of the bank account of #EndSARS promoters by the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN).

– First Sitting –

The judicial panel had its first sitting on Tuesday, 27 October.

The sitting commenced with the swearing-in of Rinu Odulala and Temitope Majekodunmi as representatives of youths on the panel.

Also, sworn-in as a member of the panel is Lucas Koyejo representing the Nigeria Human Rights Commission (NHRC).

The only petitioner taken on the first day of the sitting was Okoli Aguwu. He explained that he spent 47 days in SARS detention, accused of theft by his boss.

Agwu demands compensation from the Nigeria Police and wants his stolen properties returned.

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