A father and trader in Gwagwalda, Abuja, John Ogbu, stunned many on Friday in Abuja before a tribunal on police brutality, when he recalled his harrowing experience in the hand of men of the Special Anti-Robbery Squad (SARS) of the Nigeria Police Force.
Ogbu, a dealer in new and second hand electronic and home appliances in Gwagwalada, spoke while presenting his petition before the Independent Investigative Panel on allegations of human rights violations by the defunct Special Anti-Robbery Squad (SARS) and other units of the NPF.
He told the panel how a policeman, identified as Inspector Edwin Kendiry, allegedly walked into his shop with a stranger, seized some of his wares, detained him for weeks and compelled him to bail himself with N150,000 on realising that he was wrongly arrested.
Ogbu said he was in his shop on April 24, 2018 at about 3pm, when a man (he later identified as Insp Edwin Kendiry walked in with a stranger, who claims to have sold stolen electronics to him (Ogbu).
Ogbu said immediately the stranger pointed at him, Insp Edwin allegedly headed straight to where his wares were and seized nine television sets, without explanation, following which the policeman handcuffed and took him away to Gwagwalada Police Station.
The complainant said he told the police. at the station, that he had never seen the stranger before that day.
Ogbu stated that, rather than allow him to go home, upon realising that he was wrongly arrested and detained, the police men allegedly compelled him to part with N150, 000 as bail amount.
He said the police later took him to the University of Abuja Teaching Hospital Gwagwalada for medical examination and that when an ex-ray examination was conducted, “it was confirmed that the bone in my right leg was broken.’
Ogbu added that he had to undergo surgery at the Allied Hospital in Gwagwalada at the cost of N400, 000, to correct the problem with his leg.
He wants the panel to order that the NPF compensate him the cruel and inhuman treatment he was allegedly subjected to.
The panel head by retired Supreme Court Justice, Suleiman Galadima asked the affected policemen, Inspector Edwin to attend panel’s sitting on March 15 and state his case.
Credit: The Nation