An Abuja-based trader, Nnaemeka Orjiakor, on Wednesday pleaded with an independent panel to order the police to pay him N10 million in compensation for alleged cruel treatment.
Orjiakor made the prayer in his petition, alleging arbitrary arrest, detention, inhuman and degrading treatment by the police in 2019.
The respondents in the petition marked 2020/IIP-SARS/ABJ/42 were Mohammed Awal, defunct SARS FCT, Commissioner of Police, FCT, and Inspector General of Police.
The National Human Rights Commission (NHRC) panel, is investigating alleged human rights abuses by the defunct Special Anti-Robbery Squad (SARS) and other police units.
Narrating his ordeal in the hands of SARS, the petitioner said that operatives of the defunct police outfit led by Awal arrested him on February 8, 2019, from his shop.
“I was handcuffed and paraded around Wuse Market before being taken to SARS office in Area 3, Garki, Abuja.
“I was beaten and detained for six days,” he alleged.
He said he rented a shop from a businesswoman in Wuse Market sometime in 2006.
”Sometime in 2010 when I was not making enough sales, I rented a portion of the shop to a third party to enable me to defray my financial obligations.
”Unknown to me, the person I rented the shop to, went behind me and paid the full rent to the landlady when the rent was due.
”The person did that for him to be the sole occupant of the shop,” he said.
He added that the person subsequently invited the police to evict him from his shop at Wuse Market because he (Orjiakor) was an illegal occupant.
He said that with the police’s intervention the matter was taken to court where trial commenced.
According to him, Despite this, SARS personnel arrested him on Christmas Eve in 2018.
He alleged that the police rearrested him on February 8.
He alleged that he was tortured and subjected to degrading treatment.
He, therefore, urged the panel to order compensation be paid to him to assuage the degrading treatment he received at the hands of the police.
Garba Tetengi, SAN, who represented the chairman, retired Justice Suleiman Galadima adjourned the matter until March 22, for the continuation of hearing and defence.
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