Rivers State Governor, Nyesom Wike, has received the report from the Judicial Commission of Inquiry that Investigated Human Rights Abuses, Police Brutality and Extrajudicial Killings by the disbanded Special Anti-Robbery Squad (SARS) in the state.
The report was submitted to him by the chairman of the commission, Justice Chukwunenye Uriri (retd.), at Government House, Port Harcourt on Friday.
Governor Wike in a statement ïssued by his Special Assistant on Media, Kelvin Ebiri, said the state government has done its bit by setting up the commission and will also produce the White Paper at the next meeting of the State Executive Council.
The governor challenged the Inspector General of Police and the new Commissioner of Police in the state to implement the white paper as proof that the Federal Government was serious about ending such police brutality in the country.
“The truth of the matter is I am not sure the present Inspector General is out to fight insecurity. Now, he has appointed a new Police Commissioner for political patronage.
“If at the end of the day, we come out with the White Paper and the Attorney General sends it to the police to implement or to prosecute as the case may be, will it be implemented?
“That is why I am challenging the IG and the new CP to make sure that they justify that the Federal Government is serious about telling states to set up Judicial Commission of Inquiry to investigate the brutality of the police and the security agencies.”
Justice Chukwunenye Uriri said the commission received 190 petitions, struck out 82 for lack of due diligence or jurisdiction, and eventually considered 108 of them.
He stated that the figure depicts the highest level of recklessness, abuse of law and order in the country, saying the policemen who committed the crime against Rivers people, especially one Mr. Akin Fakorede and his other cohorts do not have any affinity with the state.
“It is noteworthy that our commission has the highest number of petitions in the federation. Lagos has 210 petitions while we have 190 petitions. Lagos is still there but by the grace of God, we are here presenting this report to you.
“It is our opinion that this figure represents the highest degree of total disregard of law and order by law enforcement agencies in the State.”
Meanwhile, Wike has named five members of the State Executive Council who will study the report and determine the content of the White Paper.
The members are the Attorney General and Commissioner of Justice, Prof. Zacchaeus Adangor; Head of Service, Mr. Rufus Godwins, Commissioner for Social Welfare and Rehabilitation, Mrs. Inime Chinwenwo- Aguma, Commissioner for Education, Prof. Kaniye Ebeku, and Commissioner for Energy Dr. Peter Medee.
Pix: Governor Nyesom Wike