[From CHINEDU NWAFOR, Abakaliki]
More than a year after, the panel set up by the Anambra Government to investigate police brutality as well as the circumstances leading up to the EndSARS protests against the activities of the Special Anti-Armed Robbery Squad (SARS) of the Nigeria Police Force, has submitted its reports with recommendations of compensation of between N5 million to N10 million to families of each deceased victim.
The Panel also recommended between N1million to N3million for victims that suffered permanent deformity from police brutality, depending on the degree of injuries sustained while those with minor injuries should be compensated with between N1million to N400, 000.
Presenting the report to the Secretary to Anambra State Government, Professor Solo Chukwulobelu, the panel chairman, Justice Ume, said N699, 500, 000 was recommended for compensation for the 170 petitioners of the EndSARS while 130 petitioners’ petitions were discharged based on the fact that their petitions were either out of the purview of the terms of reference or pending in Court.
He added that part of the panel’s recommendations, was that all EndSARS policemen found culpable would be prosecuted and all officers and men of the Nigerian Police force should be made to go on annual psychological examination.
“Policemen who refused to obey their seniors should be punished and confiscated properties of EndSARS victims released to the victims. There should be forensic examination of Awkuzu and Nnewi EndSARS offices where extra judicial killings took place and the policemen involved in the killings be prosecuted.”
Receiving the report on behalf of the Governor, the SSG, Chukwulobelu, said Obiano’s administration would study the report and make necessary recommendations.
“Be rest assured that the in-coming government will work with the out-going government,” he added.
He continued: “I commend the panel chairman, members and the youths for a successful work done, Federal Government is interested in the outcome of the panel’s report,”
“It will not be the Government that set up the panel that will implement the recommendation but be rest assured that the in-coming government will work with the out-going one’, he stated.
With the administration of Governor Willie Obiano terminating this Wednesday, March 16, implementation of the panel’s report will likely be inherited by the incoming government of Prof. Charles Soludo.