Masari charge judicial panel to fish out perpetrators of SARS brutality

By Augustine Okezie, Katsina

Governor Aminu Bello Masari of Katsina State has charged the members of the newly constituted Judicial panel of enquiry on the excesses of the recently disbanded Police Special Anti-Robbery Squad, also referred to as SARS, to fish out the perpetrators of Police brutality and also to access extent of injuries, damages to lives and properties.

Masari who gave the charge during the inauguration at Government House Katsina also tasked them to come forward with general recommendations that will promote an endearing relationship between the Nigerian Police Force and the general public.

He said; ’’Nigeria is passing through her most trying moments presently; citizens have been complaining and calling for police reforms.

‘’And following their protests, President Muhammadu Buhari had directed the disbandment of the SARS unit and the investigation of its alleged excesses and extra-judicial activities, which had attracted persistent criticism, leading to the ongoing protests and counter protests in some parts of the country.”

Masari read out the terms of reference to include: enquire, investigate and determine the propriety, constitutionality and lawfulness of the arrests, detention, interrogation, recovery and confistications and assess the extent of injuries and damage caused to lives and properties resulting from its operations in Katsina state.

He further asked the Chairman and members of the Commission to identify officers and Men of the SARS directly or indirectly connected or involved in the excess including extra- judicial actions and ascertain the roles played by such officers and Men of SARS or individuals in instigating, aiding, or abetting such extra- judicial actions and apportion blame.

Another term of reference, he said is to make specific recommendations as to the appropriate action to be taken on those found responsible for the excess and extra judicial actions as well as long and short term measures to prevent future occurrence

The 11 members Commission have Justice Abbas Abdullahi Bawale of the Katsina state High Court of Justice as its Chairman.

Other members of the Commission include Retired AIG Danlami Yar’adua, Alhaji Mustapha Ibrahim Zango, Alhaji Bello Musa Dankano, Professor Usman Dhun-nurain, Hajiya Rabi Mohammed and Ibrahim Ahmad Katsina.

The Governor expressed the need to make general recommendations in bringing about compliance with constitutional, statutory processes in the prevention, detection and investigation of suspects.

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