Nonsochukwu Uwa, Owerri
The National Coordinator, of the Network on Police Reform in Nigeria, NOPRIN, Ikule Emmanuel, has called on the victims of police brutality in the South-East zone to come and air their views.
Emmanuel stated this at the end of the 2-day Public Tribunal on Police Abuses in Nigeria, South-East Zone, organized by NOPRIN, in collaboration with the National Human Rights Commission (NHRC) and Police Service Commission, PSC, in Owerri.
According to him, the alleged police brutality “runs counter to section 34/39 of the nation’s 1999 Constitution as amended, explaining that Police Tribunal was put in place to offer aggrieved Nigerians veritable opportunities to air their views and deter the police from going ahead with this culture of impunity.
“Police brutality is as old as Nigeria as a nation but unfortunately, the Federal Government has not been serious in dealing with the issue. The Police Service Commission (PSC) and the National Human Rights Commission (NHRC) are expected to address the issue of police brutality and officers guilty of this should be dealt with in accordance with the provisions of the law. We are also calling on our people to come out and tell their stories so that they can get justice.”
Adding his voice, one of the panelists, the Executive Director of Paddy Foundation, said that, “Police brutality is most pronounced in the South-East region, stating that victims must speak out to the appropriate relevant authorities to seek redress.
“Police disciplines the bad eggs among them either through dismissal, demotion, reprimand when their offences are officially established beyond all reasonable doubts.
“Unfortunately, victims of police brutality are afraid to come forward with their case.”
Among those alleging police brutality against them or their relations were: Onyekachi Uluocha (40) Uluocha Chinedu (42) Uzochukwu Uluocha and Marshal Uzoma who were arrested by the police over a land matter.
The siblings who hail from Umuguma in the Owerri West Council Area of the state were reportedly arrested on the 6th of March, 2021 and labeled members of the controversial Eastern Security Network (ESN) consequent upon a report by one Anthony Ogbonna popularly known as Shabba and dumped into the Tiger base where they spent 8 days in detention.
They later regained their freedom following the intervention of the Human Rights Aids and legitimacy International Initiator, Comrade Uche Ohagorom.