Just about a year after the disband of the notorious Special Anti-Robbery Squad (SARS), by the President Muhammadu Buhari led Government, occasioned by the nationwide #ENDSARS protest which led to the loss of lives of both the protesters and Police officers and burning of several Police Stations, the Nigeria Police unit which is infamous for its notoriety, Police brutality and extrajudicial arrests and killings has resumed its activities.
In the early hours of Tuesday 12th October 2021, the Policemen from the Ile-Epo Police Station in Agbado Oke-Odo LCDA, attempted to arrest one David Obinna, a 14-year-old teenage boy during their usual but illegal “raiding”.
The Policemen attempted to whisk the boy away without any warrant or stating the grounds of his arrest or informing him of his rights, which is a violation of his right to liberty.
The teenager resisted the illegal arrest by the four gun wielding men of the Nigerian Police. That got the attention of commuters and traders around the area.
The people’s intervention made the Police abandon their plans of arresting the teenager, whom they badly assaulted and sprayed with tear gas in their attempt to abduct him. This led to him into seeking medical attention as he was beaten badly.
This is not an isolated case as the Abule Egba/Ile-Epo axis in recent time is now marred with all sorts of unlawful Police activities, such as profiling, illegal arrests, extortion of motorists and commuters alike, among others. Those are characteristics of the so-called disbanded SARS, which further establish that the rottenness in the Nigeria Police is deep-rooted and a clear reflection of the Nigeria repressive state.
It is more worrisome that the whole brutality happened in front of the Local Council Secretariat at Abule-Egba/Oja-Oba under bridge, beside the BRT bus terminal.
The family of the victim approached the Ile-Epo Police Station to report the criminal activities of their “boys”, and also to seek redress and justice for the victim but they were frustrated by the lacklustre attitude of the Police at the violation of fundamental rights of their teenage son.
A Police officer at the station asked the traumatised family of the teenager: “What do you want us to do now, after all your boy is freed?”.
The family insisted that the four Policemen that assaulted ward must be prosecuted for their criminality.
According to the mother of the teenager who is a member of the foremost Human Rights group: Joint Legal Action Aids (JLAA), Comrade Nkechi Obinna, “Civil Society bodies have sent a petition to the CP. I was at the CP’s office yesterday on the matter and the perpetrators from the Police Station have been summoned to the CP’S office today by 10:00 am.
She has promised to keep us updated on the outcome of the meeting at the CP’s office.
The outcome of the meeting at the CP’s office today will determine what further action to take.
This is one barbarity too many and it has to stop.
We will keep you posted as the matter unfolds.