Policemen Tortured, Shot Me Within Lagos Police HQ –Mechanic

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30-year-old mechanic, Oladele Adebanjo, has accused the policemen attached to
the Special Anti-Robbery Squad of the Lagos State Police Command of torturing
and shooting him while he was in detention.
Adebanjo
said he spent seven days in the SARS custody at the police command headquarters
in Ikeja, over false allegations that he stole a commercial bus.
He
said, “In August 2011, I took a Mazda bus model E2000 on a hire purchase
agreement of N1.8m which was meant to be paid in N30,000 monthly instalments
from a businessman, Olatunji Adeyemi.

“Though
there were slight defaults in payment which arose from mechanical faults and a
major accident sometimes in February 2012, I carried Adeyemi along and discharged
my obligations accordingly and paid N910, 000 by September 14, 2012 before the
bus was stolen.”

He
said the bus was stolen at the residence of the driver he employed to drive it
in Ikorodu area of the state and reported the matter at the Sagamu Road Police
Division.
He
added that Adeyemi got furious about the incident and reported at the Oworo
Police Division that he stole the bus so as to evade the payment of the
outstanding money.
He
said, “On October 22, after about six weeks of  unsuccessful search for
the bus, I and the driver reported back to the Oworo Police Division as I was
instructed to do but surprisingly the IPO in charge of the matter said my case
had been transferred to SARS.”
He
said a policeman from SARS came for them at the Oworo station, got them
handcuffed and drove them to the command headquarters in Ikeja where they were
received by Taofeek Olokede at the SARS.
He
said, “As soon as we got there, Olokede asked for Adebanjo and as soon as I
identified myself, he gave me a dirty slap. He immediately moved me to a room
where he stripped me leaving only my pants on.
“He
tied my hands and hung me to a metal pipe fitted to a wall. He also put stone
into a container and used a chain to hang it on my neck. He beat me
intermittently in the process and this lasted for about an hour before he
removed it.
“The
driver and four other persons arrested for another alleged incident suffered
similar fate and two of them gave up the ghost after intense torture in the
process. When I refused to make an incriminating statement that I stole the
bus, he brought out a pistol from his holster and shot me at the leg.”
Adebanjo
said the bullet pierced through his leg, adding that Olokede thereafter ordered
his men to move him to the cell.
Adebanjo,
who recalled that he was tortured between 9 and 10pm, said he lost so much
blood in the process.
He
said on October 23, he was taken to Shomolu General Hospital where Olokede’s
men lied to the doctors that he was an armed robber shot while trying to
escape. He said he was given some first aid and moved back to the cell.
Adebanjo
said while in detention, neither his parents nor his lawyer was allowed to see
him.
He
said, “A family friend who happened to be a senior police officer in Abuja who
learnt about my ordeal sent words to his colleague in Lagos who intervened and
I was subsequently released on October 29. The O/C SARS and the Commissioner of
Police later got wind of the development.
“Apart
from the gunshot injury which damaged my bones, my shoulders got broken.  I
was discharged at the hospital on Monday. In fact they have temporarily
incapacitated me.”
His
father, Allison, said he had spent over N400,000 on Adebanjo’s health, adding
that the policemen who treated his son in such a brutal manner needed to be
brought to book.
“What
the SARS policemen did was jungle justice and all those involved should not get
away with. If we had not sought help from a senior police officer who blew the
lid open, maybe my son would have been killed by now,” he said.
When
our correspondent contacted Adeyemi on the telephone on Tuesday, he admitted
reporting the case at the the Oworo Police Division and SARS.
“I
wonder why they shot him too because I only reported to them that he stole my
bus and that he had initially been defaulting in terms of payment of the hire
purchase agreement,” he said.
The
Lagos State Police Public Relations Officer, Ngozi Braide, in a text message to
our correspondent said she had not been briefed on the incident. However, she
said the command would not condone such extrajudicial acts from its officers
and men.
“I
am not aware of this matter but I will get in touch with the CP (Umar Manko)
since you said it has been reported to him. But, I know that if our men had
engaged in any extra-judicial act during their course of duty, the command will
never condone it,” she said.
Source:
Punch

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