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Apo killings: Cop spills the beans

Posted by By MURPHY GANAGANA and BEN OKEZIE, Abuja on 2005/06/23 | Views: 270 |

Apo killings: Cop spills the beans


A mobile policeman Wednesday, stunned the Board of Enquiry probing the circumstances surrounding the recent killing of six Igbo youths by the police in Abuja, as he gave sordid details of how one of the victims whom he attempted to rescue was seized from him by a police patrol team and executed in broad daylight.

A mobile policeman Wednesday, stunned the Board of Enquiry probing the circumstances surrounding the recent killing of six Igbo youths by the police in Abuja, as he gave sordid details of how one of the victims whom he attempted to rescue was seized from him by a police patrol team and executed in broad daylight.

Testifying before the six-man panel constituted by the acting Inspector- General of Police, Mr. Sunday Ehindero, in the wake of public outcry and riots which trailed the killings, Constable Hassan Wajiga with service number 214506, and attached to Squadron No. 45 of the Police Mobile Force[PMF], said contrary to initial claims by the police, one of the victims had escaped with bullet wounds from the scene where the others were shot, and was brought to him for safety by one Mr. Goddy Eze, a resident of Prince and Princess Estate in the Apo district of Abuja, where he was on guard duty.

Wajiga, dressed in a Mobile Police black T-shirt with police crest, said the victim, whose name he didn’t disclose, had told him that he had problems with a team of policemen who had brutally killed two of his brothers for no just cause, and therefore requested to be taken to the police Force Headquarters rather than the Durumi or Garki police station, where he feared that the alleged killer cops would snuff life out of him.

With no cab or commercial motor-bike to convey them to the Force Headquarters, Wajiga said he decided to trek with the victim to a point where he could get a vehicle, but was accosted by a police patrol team using an ALGON Prado jeep, who requested that the victim be handed to them.
"This was between 7 and 8 am on Wednesday, 8 June, 2005, and when I told them the victim wanted me to take him to the Force Headquarters, they said I should just leave him with them. But as I turned to go, I heard a gunshot. When I turned back to see what was happening, I saw the victim lying down. I heard another shot, then they threw his dead body into their vehicle and drove away," he told an astonished audience at the sitting in Abuja.

Wajiga repeatedly affirmed that he saw his colleagues shoot the deceased twice, just as he said he could identify the police officer who seized the deceased from him before the shooting. He, however, said he could not identify the policemen who fired the second shot as the officer was in mufti and he (Wajiga) was a few metres away.

In their testimonies before the panel, Goddy Eze, Innocent Okereke and Bassey Enobong, a security supervisor at the estate all painted graphic details of how the deceased met his gory end in the hands of the police patrol team whose membership was put at between six and eight. Eze confirmed to the panel that he was the person who handed over the victim to Constable Wajiga. According to him, the victim, whose name Daily Sun later found out to be Ekene Isaac had begged him to take him to the Force Headquarters, but he declined and handed him over to the Mobile policeman.

Innocent Okereke, a truck pusher told the panel that he saw the policemen in the ALGON Jeep and heard two gunshots at about 7 in the morning.
A mild drama played out shortly before the commencement of Wednesday’s sitting of the panel, as the lead counsel to families of the slain youths, Mr. Amobi Nzelu refused to sit on a cushion chair meant for him.

Nzelu, who jokingly said his decision was based on fears of the possibility of a bomb or any other explosive being planted in the chair to harm him, opted for a plastic chair which he used throughout the duration of the day’s session, just as Senator Uche Chukwumerije caused a stir as he moved into the venue at about 11.25am, before the commencement of proceedings 15 minutes later.

Though in apparent show of solidarity with his kinsmen, Chukwumerije, however, declined comments, as he simply declared "no press interviews," when approached by Daily Sun reporter.

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Comments (3)

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Abieyuwa(Edo, Nigeria)says...

Otasowie means evening life is better than morning life. There is an error in your “evening life is better than evening life”?

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Naija g(Houston, Minnesota, US)says...

Sokari doesn’t mean joy. Joy is Biobela. Go to the village and ask the meaning of the name.

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Fay(Katy, Texas, US)says...

Actually translates to bravehearted.