The Lagos State Governor, Mr. Babajide Sanwo-Olu, has revealed the identities of suspected police officers involved in the brutality of #EndSARS protesters in Area C, Surulere, Lagos State.
Sanwo-Olu has also raised a seven-man Judicial Panel of Enquiry and Restitution to investigate cases of brutality and human rights violations committed by operatives of the dissolved Special Anti-Robbery Squad (SARS) in the state.
The move is part of the steps being taken by Lagos Government to address the five-point demands of the youth demonstrating against SARS brutality.
Sanwo-Olu made the announcement during a live address held at the State House, Marina.
The panel, which is being headed by retired Justice Doris Okuwobi, will sit for six months and is mandated to thoroughly investigate all verifiable claims of abuses and fatalities arising from SARS engagement in the state, with the objective to bring erring officers to justice and get compensation for the victims.
The panel members have three individuals representing civil society, one person representing security agency and one person representing the government. Human Rights Commission and protesters are also expected to nominate their representatives, before the panel commences sitting next week.
Apart from the police brutality and harassment that occurred during the protest, one person also died.
The deceased was subsequently identified as 55-year-old Ikechukwu Iloamauzor.
Iloamauzor was allegedly killed by a stray bullet during Monday’s #EndSARS protest in Surulere.
The governor noted that four officers have been arrested in connection with the incident.
He identified the policemen as two inspectors and two sergeants.
The governor said his government frowned at police misconduct seriously and would continue to respect the rights of the citizens to demonstrate peacefully.
He condemned the violence that marred the EndSARS protest in Surulere on Monday.
Sanwo-Olu disclosed “all the four erring police officers who fired live ammunition at peaceful protesters in Area C Police Command in Surulere had been identified and currently facing an orderly room trial that is being monitored by the Government”.
He gave the names of the erring officers to include: Inspector Bagou Michael, Inspector Ekpoudom Etop, Sergeant Nnamdi Majura, and Sergeant Akinyemi Benson.
“All the four officers have been identified and are going through an orderly trial.
“We have also set up a panel to look into all cases of police brutality and fatality and have set up a N200m compensation fund. Once again, I apologise to any protester that has faced brutality during any of the protests days.
“There were express instructions to Police in Lagos to cooperate with protesters and in situations where arrests are unavoidable, there must be full transparency and upholding of their legal
“If there is anyone still in custody, please bring it to my notice. Today’s unfortunate incident of thuggery is being investigated and we will bring to book those behind it.
“Even as we affirm the constitutional rights of all protesters to peacefully make your grievances known, it is also our duty as a government to ensure that the exercise of a set of rights by one group of people does not in any way constrain the rights of any other group of people.”
Earlier, the Lagos police command had denied that policemen killed a protester at Area C in Surulere.
Instead, the Police Public Relations Officer in Lagos State, SP Olumuyiwa Adejobi, said a police inspector, Erin Ayodeji, attached to Surulere Anti-kidnapping Unit, and another man was killed.
Adejobi claimed that two other inspectors were critically wounded during the violent attack on their unit.
Adejobi said the man died from a stray bullet from the protesters, while Insp. Ekei Joshua and Insp. Peter Agabi were receiving treatment at Lagos State University Teaching Hospital, Ikeja.