Breaking: Abuja EndSARS panel awards N146m to 27 victims - NEWS FRONTIER DAILY


Thursday, December 23, 2021

Breaking: Abuja EndSARS panel awards N146m to 27 victims


The Independent Investigative Panel on human right violations by the defunct Special Anti-Robbery Squad (SARS), and other Units of the Nigeria Police Force, sitting in Abuja, has awarded the sum of N146million as compensation to 27 victims.

The panel, which was headed by a retired Justice of the Supreme Court, Suleiman Galadima, gave the award, after it considered 20 petitions that were brought before it by either the victims or their family members.

The panel's Secretary, Mr. Hillary Ogbonna, disclosed that allegations in the petitions bordered on extra-judicial killings, enforced disappearances, cruel/degrading and inhumane treatment of victims by police officers, prolonged detentions, as well as non payment of judgement debts.

Ogbonna revealed that the panel received a total of 297 petitions from 29 states of the federation, with 123 of the petitions filed by victims of Police brutality in the Federal Capital Territory, Abuja.

He added that whereas the panel concluded 144 cases, 55 of them were struck out, 12 withdrawn, one dismissed, while about 140 petitions are still pending.

Meanwhile, among those the panel awarded monetary compensation to, included the family of Miss. Anita Akapson, niece to a former Minister of Finance, Senator Nenadi Usman, who was murdered in cold blood by a trigger-happy police officer.

31-year old Miss Akapson was shot at close range by a Deputy Superintendent of Police, Godwin Wagozie, on October 13, 2018, in Abuja.

The Police initially claimed that the deceased who had just returned to Nigeria after her graduation from Kent University in the United Kingdom, was killed in a case of mistaken identity.

It stated that an officer shot her because he thought she was an armed robber that was escaping from the scene of a crime.

The panel awarded the sum of N15m to her family as compensation.

The Justice Suleiman-led panel equally awarded the sum of N10m to the family of Angela Igwetu, a National Youth Service Corps, NYSC, member that was shot dead in Abuja, on the eve of her passing out parade.

Similarly, about 16 years after the extra-judicial killing of six Igbo traders at the Apo mechanic village, Abuja, the panel, on Thursday, awarded the sum of N3m to cover for their funeral expenses.

It ordered that families of the deceased persons-  Ifeanyi Ozor, Chinedu Meniru, Augustina Arebu, Anthony Nwokike, Paulinus Ogbonna and Ekene Isaac Mgbe- should be paid N500, 000 each that was earlier awarded to them by a previous panel that was headed by Justice Goodluck Olatumbosun.

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