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Group urges implementation of Abia, Lagos #EndSARS panels’ reports

By Bertram Nwannekanma, Kehinde Olatunji, Eniola Daniel (Lagos), Charles Ogugbuaja (Owerri) and Msugh Ityokura (Abuja)
19 November 2021   |   3:56 am
A human rights group, Foundation for Environmental Rights Advocacy and Development (FENRAD), has urged both Abia and Lagos State governments to implement the #EndSARS panels’ reports submitted to them.

[FILES] Minister of Police Affairs, Muhammadu Dingyadi PHOTO:Twitter

• Reps minority caucus asks Buhari to sack Lai Mohammed
• Lagos panel members are being unfairly persecuted, Adegboruwa alleges
• Counsel urges Sanwo-Olu to disclose who deployed soldiers to Lekki Toll-Gate

A human rights group, Foundation for Environmental Rights Advocacy and Development (FENRAD), has urged both Abia and Lagos State governments to implement the #EndSARS panels’ reports submitted to them.

In a statement, yesterday, signed by its Executive Director, Nelson Nwafor and Head, Corporate Accountability and Human Rights Enforcement, Akande Femisi, the group appealed for a restorative justice,” which would restore people’s confidence in government.

While urging Lagos State government not to do anything that may obstruct justice in the implementation of the panel’s report, the group implored Abia State Government to also make its panel’s report public to allow scrutiny and access.

MEANWHILE, the minority caucus in the House of Representatives has urged President Muhammadu Buhari to sack the Minister of Information and Culture, Lai Mohammed should he fail to resign from office immediately.

Minister of Police Affairs, Dr. Muhammad Maigari Dingyadi, has averred that reliable channel of communication between the citizens and the police could have averted last year’s #EndSARS protest that rocked the nation and crippled the economy.

The minister said this yesterday at the South-West Zonal Sensitisation Campaign on Police Public Complaints Committee (PPCC) held at the Excellence Hotel, Ogba, Lagos.

HOWEVER, a human rights lawyer and member of the Lagos State Judicial Panel of Inquiry on Restitution for Victims of SARS Related Abuses and Other Matters, Ebun Olu Adegboruwa (SAN), yesterday alleged that members of the panel were being unfairly persecuted.
 
According to him, since the submission of the report, members of the panel have become subject to vicious attacks by those suspected to be agents of the government. He said all manners of allegations had been heaped upon the panel members, some of who have been called unprintable names.
 
The human rights lawyer said it was unfair to denigrate people’s hard-earned reputation on account that they accepted to render selfless service at the behest of government.

BUT counsel to the state government, who is also a member of the judicial panel on #EndSARS, Abiodun Owonikoko, has urged the Lagos State government to establish the facts on who deployed the Army to the scene of the protest at Lekki Toll-Gate.

He, however, stated that over 40 discrepancies were found in the report. Owonikoko, who spoke during an interview with Arise News, said there were several details and information left out in the report by the panel.
  
He said he was shocked about what he read to be the report, particularly the finding with regards to over 40 victims, some of whom were described as deceased and missing and attributed by the panel to what is called the Lekki incident.

He also accused Adegboruwa of being absent for the most part of the proceedings.
 
“Adegboruwa cannot give an objective report on the Lekki incident because he was always absent during the sittings, which were held on Saturdays. He already had a case in court challenging the legality of the tollgate. It is worrisome that he also signed off on the report, given that he was mostly absent. It makes the report tainted,” the lawyer said.