…As family seeks N1b compensation, prosecution of errant cops
By Ameh Ejekwonyilo
A complainant, Mrs. Victoria Agori, at the National Human Rights Commission (NHRC) Independent Investigative Panel on human rights violations by defunct Special Anti-Robbery Squad and other units of the Nigerian Police on Tuesday gave a chilling account of how her 21-year-old son, Daniel Agori was shot dead by officers of the Inspector General of Police (IGP) Monitoting unit at Alor, Ikwere, Rivers State on May 10, 2019.
Mrs. Agori and mother of the late Daniel told the 11-Member panel chaired by Justice Suleiman Galadima that SP Justina Adaka was assisted by his colleague, Yusuf to kill her son extra-judicially at Alo Police station in Ikwere, Rivers state.
According to the complainant who was examined by her lawyer, Abiodun Olutakunbi, the Police personnel who allegedly shot Daniel never made any inquiry into allegations of kidnapping and rape of 90-year-old woman which she noted was levelled against the victim posthumously.
Visibly becoming emotional while recalling fond memories of her deceased son whom she noted was a hair stylist and good footballer, she disclosed to the panel that one of her daughters, Felicia Agori connived with her police boyfriend, Mr..Victor Nelson to invade the family house.
The crux of the matter between Daniel and Felicia, according to her borders on petty arguments about the latter’s police boyfriend.
Continuing, she alleged that her family house was invaded by some operatives of the IGP’s Monitoring unit, including: SP Justine Adaka, DSP Yusuf Bello, Victor NELSON, and Musa who are now respondents at the panel, which led to the death of Daniel and torture of her other son, David.
She informed the panel that the said respondents upon invading the family house in the absence of her husband, shot sporadically around her house and carted away valuables including N200,000 cash, shoes and dried fish among several other items.
She stated that before removing the said valuables, one of the alleged erring cops forcefully exposed her private part and inserted his gun at intervals, while labeling her and her deceased son as kidnappers.
Prior to the above inhuman and degrading treatment allegedly perpetrated against her by the police, she told the panel that one of the police personnel who invaded her home also used her pounding pestle and mortar to beat her several times.
Asked what she wants the panel to do for her, the visibly traumatised woman said all she wanted is justice for her late son and her family.
Specifically, she prayed the panel to ensure that the Police Officers allegedly involved in the matter are arrested and prosecuted in accordance with the law.
She asked that the Police be compelled to release the corpse of her deceased son to her family for proper burial.
In addition, she prayed the panel to order that her family be compensated with the sum of N1 billion for the alleged killing of her son by the Police and for other human rights violations suffered by the family in this circumstances.
Answering questions on the whereabouts of her daughter, Felicia Agori who allegedly brought the police to deal with her brother, Daniel (now deceased), the complainant said she does not know.
Although, she conceded that through some anonymous phone calls, she gathered that Felicia might be with one of the alleged police culprits, her boy friend, Victor Nelson.
She added that Felicia is reportedly regretting her role in the death of her brother, Daniel as according to her, she only involved her Police boy friend, Nelson, to warn her brother not knowing that he would be killed in the process by the Police.
According to a narration, allegedly made by the mentioned Police Officers, and presented by the complainant, the Officers have since apologised for their action saying that they made a mistake in killing Daniel.
Police lawyer, James Idachaba while cross-examining the complainant inquired why Felicia was not listed among the respondents in the petition.
The complainant said that she is afraid that Felicia may not have the courage to appear considering her role in the death of the young man.
The panel adjourned the matter to January 26, 202, for Rivers state Public Relations Officer to appear before it and explain the action taken by the Police in the state over the complaint which they were said to have received.