Transparency and Integrity

1/06/2021

Offa Robbery: SARS Tortured us to implicate Saraki- Petitioners

 


" We were Tortured And Threatened with Death To Implicate Saraki." 

...... Petitioners Demand Justice At Judicial Panel on #EndSARS 


Two petitioners at the Judicial Panel of Enquiry on “EndSARS” sitting in Ilorin, Kwara state capital Wednesday narrated how officers and men of the disbanded Special Anti-robbery Squad (SARS) tortured them to implicate former Senate President Bukola Saraki in the April 5, 2018 Offa robbery incident.


According to TheNations's report, the petitioners alleged that the dreaded SARS personnel out them under duress to tell lies against Saraki, claiming he bought ammunition for them. 


The petitioner of Alhaji Kehinde Gobir and Alhaji Shuaib Jawando was titled dubbed ‘the SARS officers of alleged high depth of impunity and human rights abuses.’


The duo narrated how they spent more than 73 days in police detention in Ilorin and Abuja, adding that the police accused them of collecting guns from the former Senate President, Bukola Saraki, to participate in the robbery operation.


In their separate testimonies, the duo said that SARS granted them what they described as  ‘administrative bail’ and threatened them with more harm should they relate with Saraki.





The petitioners stressed that they were never  used by Saraki for any  criminal activities. 


They also described how they were tortured and subjected to inhuman conditions while in detention in Illorin and Abuja.


Speaking further they said their only offense was being supporters of Sen Bukola Saraki which led to the police threatening them with death to implicate Saraki while in detention. 


The petitioners also accused the disbanded SARS officers of confiscating their property, which include two Toyota Corolla, handsets and N250, 000 collected before they were granted bail.


They also urged the panel to help them redeem their battered image in the eyes of the public as they had been suggested to unwarranted stigmatization and disgrace which they said had affected their livelihood and economic fortune.


They said: “In view of the foregoing and in the interest of justice, we urge your esteemed office to intervene swiftly to this situation by returning our property as this action is tantamount to infringement on the fundamental human rights to be enjoyed under the Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria as amended.


“ We did not participate in any crime nor involve in any Offa robbery killing or having any criminal records whatsoever as being wrongfully alleged by the SARS officers. We urge the panel to do the needful by facilitating the quick recovery of our property.”


In his response, the police counsel, Adekunle Iwalaye, urged the panel to dismiss the petitions in their entirety.


The chairman of the panel, retired Justice Tunde Garba, later adjourned the matter to January 13, 2021.


Dr. Bukola Saraki sharing the news via his social media handles said,

" Alhamdulilah, like Light, the truth will always come out." 

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