Weekly Updates on #EndSARS Judicial Panels of Inquiry – No. 15
The Judicial Panels of Inquiry set up across Nigeria to investigate the excesses of the Nigeria Police Force and other security agencies have continued sittings in the FCT and these 13 states in the week under review: Abia, Akwa Ibom, Bayelsa, Benue, Ebonyi, Ekiti, Gombe, Kaduna, Lagos, Ogun, Osun, Oyo and Plateau.
The ongoing Judicial Panels of Inquiry provide an opportunity for the Nigerian government at the federal and state levels to meet major yearnings of Nigerians, which is justice for all victims and survivors of police brutality and implementation of the eventual recommendations of the Judicial Panels. In the FCT and 18 states, the Judicial Panels of Inquiry have closed submission of petitions, while the Panels in Adamawa, Edo, Niger, Katsina, Kwara and Rivers States have concluded sittings/hearings. The Judicial Panels of Inquiry in Niger and Kwara States have submitted their recommendations to the government for implementation.
On February 24, 2021, Governor Abubakar Sani Bello of Niger State received the report of the Judicial Panel of Inquiry set up by the state government to investigate alleged police brutality and abuse of human rights in the state. The report was presented at the Government House Minna, by Justice Ishaku Usman, Chairman of the Panel. Justice Ishaku Usman said the Panel received 17 petitions and 53 witnesses appeared before it. 50 exhibits were tendered which included; three teeth of a young lady, three death certificates, 33 empty teargas canisters, and four bullet shells.
Similarly, on February 24, 2021, the Kwara State Judicial Panel of Inquiry submitted its final report to the Governor of Kwara State, Mallam Abdulrahman Abdulrazaq. The report is in three (III) volumes; Volume One (I) is the main report, Volume Two (II) contains the petitions received and adopted by the Panel while Volume Three (III) contains the list of all the exhibits tendered and admitted during the Panel’s proceedings.
The submission and public presentation of the reports are in compliance with Yiaga Africa and EiE Nigeria’s
recommendations on submission and presentation of the reports. Yiaga Africa and EiE Nigeria’s observation of the Panels of Inquiry will continue to provide information to promote transparency and accountability and build citizens’ confidence in the process.