Saturday, 28th January 2023
<To guardian.ng
Search
Breaking News:

Victims of police brutality receive N289m as FG appeals for forgiveness

By Ameh Ochojila, Abuja
15 September 2022   |   2:36 am
The Federal Government, yesterday, disbursed N289 million to 74 victims of police brutality as compensation for various rights infractions by the police.

[FILES] A police armoured vehicle (Photo by Pius Utomi EKPEI / AFP)

The Federal Government, yesterday, disbursed N289 million to 74 victims of police brutality as compensation for various rights infractions by the police.

    
The National Human Rights Commission (NHRC), in accordance with its statutory role, offered symbolic disbursement of compensation to the various victims whose rights were breached at its Headquarters in Abuja.
  
A breakdown of details according to the NHRC showed that, out of 74 victims who were compensated, 25 were victims of extrajudicial killings.
  
Others include four victims of enforced disappearance, 25 victims of torture, inhuman and degrading treatment, 16  victims of Illegal arrest and prolonged detention and four people for confiscation of property and abuse of property.
  
58 victims get their dummy cheques at the ceremony, while arrangements are ongoing to reach the families of those who are dead.
  
The NHRC, said the award is just an aspect of the justice process, and that there are other orders made by the Commission that will be implemented.

The Commission last year December awarded N146 million in compensation to victims of police brutality.
  
Speaking during the disbursement,  Executive Secretary of NHRC, Tony Ojukwu,  who appealed to the victims for forgiveness, said the award was only symbolic as they cannot be adequately compensated compared to the levels of infractions.

  
He said: “ We are only saying we are sorry, that the government of Nigeria cares for you.  We acknowledge the violations of your rights. Victims should not take laws into their hands.
  
“The wheel of justice may be slow, but it will eventually get to the destination. What we have done today is not the best, but we are moving forward.”

Also, Chairperson of NHRC’s Council, Dr. Salamatu Suleiman urged Nigerians whose rights have been breached not to take laws into their hands, but to always approach the commission for redress.
   
She said:  “We call upon Nigerians to continue to uphold their rights and make good use of the offices of the Commission in the 36 states and the Federal Capital Territory (FCT) to report violations of their rights.
“I want to use this opportunity to thank and congratulate all petitioners for their belief in the human rights mechanisms of Nigeria and for diligently presenting and pursuing their cases before the panel.”