Oyo State Judicial Panel of Inquiry into Police Brutality – Day 48

Table of Contents

This is a report of the forty-eighth public hearing of the Oyo State Judicial Panel of Inquiry into Police Brutality, Violation of Rights of Citizens and Unlawful Killings in Oyo State.

Venue: The House of Chiefs, Oyo State House of Assembly, Ibadan, Oyo State.

Date: Wednesday, May 26, 2021.

Today’s sitting commenced at about 9:45am, shortly after the arrival of the Oyo State Judicial Panel members.

Petitions for Mention at the Oyo State Judicial Panel

1. Case No. OYJPPB/012

Mr Muhammad Sadisu v Commissioner of Police, Ogun State. The petitioner was present and was represented by Adenike Ibitara (Esq.). Meanwhile, the respondent was absent and was not represented by a legal counsel.

The petitioner’s counsel, Mrs Ibitara said that the petition was last adjourned to enable her update the Oyo State Judicial Panel about the steps taken in respect of the petitioner’s case. She said that the matter is pending at Ishara Magistrate Court, Abeokuta and the petitioner is being held in custody at Oba Custodial Centre, Abeokuta. She said that the petitioner is being charged with armed robbery and unlawful possession of firearms. She gave the charge number as MA/012/2020.

She said that further actions would be taken as soon as the court resumes from the JUSUN strike. She therefore made an application to withdraw the petition before the Oyo State Judicial Panel.

In view of the application, petition OYJPPB/012 was struck out.

2. Case No. OYJPPB/089

Pastor Ajayi Opeyemi Isaac v Nigeria Police, Akanran Division. The petitioner was present and was represented by M. O. Olagunju (Esq.). Meanwhile, Mr M. A. Ojeah appeared on behalf of the respondent.

The respondent’s counsel, Mr Ojeah said that he had been served with the processes of the petition but was yet to file a response. He promised to file the response before the next adjourned date.

The petition was therefore adjourned till June 3, 2021 for definite hearing. The Oyo State Judicial Panel ordered that hearing notices should be issued and served on both parties.

Petitions for Further Hearing at the Oyo State Judicial Panel

3. Case No. OYJPPB/013

Mr Bello Olusegun Kayode v Nigeria Police, Sango Police Station. The petitioner was absent and was not represented by a legal counsel. Mr M. A. Ojeah represented the respondent.

Mrs Oluwafolake Ogundele, the counsel to the Oyo State Judicial Panel said that the petitioner called the panel’s office earlier today, to inform her that he was aware that his petition would appear today but he had written a letter to the governor and a copy has been forwarded to the panel’s WhatsApp line. She however said that she checked the phone but didn’t get the message.

She said that she called the petitioner on the phone to inform him that she didn’t get the message but the petitioner insisted that he had sent the letter and she should check again. She said she inquired about the content of the letter but the petitioner told her to read the message and ended the call.

The Oyo State Judicial Panel said it appeared that the petitioner was no longer interested in the petition but the petition would be adjourned for the last time to give the petitioner the benefit of the doubt.

With that, the petition was adjourned by the Oyo State Judicial Panel till June 10, 2021 for further hearing or striking out.

4. Case No. OYJPPB/034

Mr Salami Sarafadeen v Nigeria Police, Saki Area Command. The petitioner was absent but was represented by a legal counsel, D. S. Olabode (Esq.). Meanwhile, Mr M. A. Ojeah appeared on behalf of the respondent.

Mr Olabode, the petitioner’s counsel apologised for the petitioner’s absence and pointed out that the petition was last adjourned to enable the respondent present his second witness, who was in charge of the petitioner’s impounded Bajaj motorcycle.

The witness, Ayowale Olusola was invited to the witness stand and was sworn on the Bible. He is a police officer; an inspector by rank. He said that he knows the petitioner because he was a suspect in a case of conspiracy and armed robbery which was investigated by his team in January, 2020 at the disbanded SARS office, Saki.

He said that the motorcycle was registered as an exhibit because it was a transferred case to SARS office. He said that the case originated from Ago Are Division which is being controlled by the SARS office. He said that to the best of his knowledge, the motorcycle is at Ago Are Police Station and the motorcycle was never moved out of the station.

He said that he last saw the motorcycle at the police station, last week Tuesday and it was in a good condition. He said that he would be surprised if someone told him that the motorcycle had been handed over to the petitioner’s family.

At this point, the witness was cross examined by the petitioner’s counsel, Mr Olabode and the members of the Oyo State Judicial Panel.

With that, the petitioner’s counsel, Mr Olabode prayed the Oyo State Judicial Panel to order the respondent to release the petitioner’s Bajaj motorcycle which is being held in custody.

The petition was adjourned till June 6, 2021 for further hearing.

Picture of the panellists at the Oyo State Judicial Panel of Inquiry on May 26, 2021

Petitions for Hearing or Striking Out at the Oyo State Judicial Panel

5. Case No. OYJPPB/069

Mr Kolawole Owoade v Nigeria Police Force, SARS, Oyo/Ogbomoso Command, Durbar, Oyo. The petitioner was present and was represented by J. D. Rufai (Esq.). Mr M. A. Ojeah appeared on behalf of the respondent.

The petition was last adjourned to enable the respondent open a defence. However, Mr Ojeah, the respondent’s counsel said that having gone through the petition, there was nothing to react to. He said that he would rely on the petitioner’s testimony.

The Oyo State Judicial Panel appreciated Mr Ojeah for resting his case on the petitioner’s testimony. The panel however pointed out that Mr Ojeah was wrong to say that there was nothing to react to in the petition because the petitioner’s son was shot dead by the police.

The petition was therefore adjourned sine die.

6. Case No. OYJPPB/087

Mr Adejumo Lekan Isaac v Nigeria Police, Ogbomoso Area Command. The petitioner was absent but was represented by A. I. Olaosebikan (Esq.). Meanwhile, the respondent was represented by Mr M. A. Ojeah.

At the last adjourned date which was April 15, 2021, the petitioner’s mother gave her testimony before the Oyo State Judicial Panel and the petition was adjourned to enable the petitioner present his second witness. With that, the second witness was invited to the witness stand and was sworn on the Bible.

The name of the witness is Adeniran Adejumo. He is the petitioner’s older brother. He is a mechanic. He prayed the Oyo State Judicial Panel to adopt his written statement on oath which was deposed on the 5th of May, 2021 as his evidence.

This petition was filed before the Oyo State Judicial Panel because the petitioner was hit by a stray bullet fired by the men of the Nigeria Police Force. The witness however said that he was not at the scene when his brother was shot but was instrumental to how he was taken and treated at Ladoke Akintola University Teaching Hospital, Ogbomoso.

He prayed the Oyo State Judicial Panel to compensate his family with the sum of N20 million.

The petitioner’s counsel, Mr Olaosebikan tendered the receipts of the petitioner’s medical treatment and other documents before the Oyo State Judicial Panel and they were marked and admitted as exhibits.

With that, the witness was cross examined by the respondent’s counsel, Mr Ojeah and the members of the Oyo State Judicial Panel.

The petition was therefore adjourned till June 3, 2021 to enable the petitioner present his last witness and to enable the respondent open a defence.

Petitions for Hearing at the Oyo State Judicial Panel

7. Case No. OYJPPB/038

Mr Adegbite Nasiru v Nigeria Police, Eleyele Ibadan. The petitioner was present and was represented by S. A. Oladele (Esq.). Meanwhile, the respondent was represented by Mr M. A. Ojeah.

The petitioner’s counsel, Mr Oladele said that the petitioner alongside one other witness is relevant to the petition. With that, the petitioner was invited to the witness stand and was sworn on the Quran.

The name of the petitioner is Adegbite Nasiru. He lives in Ibadan. He is a pensioner. He prayed the Oyo State Judicial Panel to adopt his written statement on oath as his evidence.

The petitioner said that he had gone to report an issue relating to land dispute at Eleyele Police Station. He said that he was asked to pay N50,000 but because he was unable to pay the said amount, he was detained by the police. He said that he was forced to sign a statement at the police Station and he paid N10,000 before he was released.

He prayed the Oyo State Judicial Panel to condemn the act of the men of the police force and compensate him with the sum of N5 million.

With that, the petitioner was cross examined by the respondent’s counsel, Mr Ojeah and the members of Oyo State Judicial Panel.

The second witness, Kayode Adegbite was invited to the witness stand and he was sworn on Quran. He prayed the Oyo State Judicial Panel to adopt his written statement on oath as his evidence.

The witness was cross examined and the petition was adjourned till June 8, 2021 for further hearing to enable the respondent open a defence.

8. Case No. OYJPPB/092

Mr Azeez Jabaru v Nigeria Police, Mokola Station. The petitioner was represented by Alimat Akinyemi and a legal counsel, M. O. Olagunju (Esq.). Mr M. A. Ojeah maintained appearance on behalf of the respondent.

The petitioner’s counsel, Mr Olagunju pointed out that it was agreed at the last adjourned date that the police officer, Mr Momoh involved in the case would appear before the Oyo State Judicial Panel to settle the matter amicably with the petitioner. He however said that the police had failed to present Mr Momoh before the panel. He therefore prayed the panel to adjourn the petition for definite hearing.

In response, Mr Ojeah, the respondent’s counsel said that he was not aware of the agreement between the Police Officer in Charge Legal, CSP Funke Fawole and the petitioner’s counsel, Mr Olagunju.

Thus, the petition was adjourned till June 3, 2021 for hearing. The Oyo State Judicial Panel ordered that a letter should be written to the Oyo State Commissioner of Police to request for the presence of Mr Momoh and a letter of summon should be issued and served on Mr Momoh.

9. Case No. OYJPPB/075

Mrs Oluwatoyin Oseni v The Nigeria Police, Ikeja Police Command and Oyo State Judicial Panel. The petitioner was present and was represented by Temitope Adesiyan (Esq.). The first respondent was absent and was not represented by a legal counsel, while Mr M. A. Ojeah maintained appearance on behalf of the second respondent.

The petitioner’s counsel, Temitope Adesiyan (Esq.) said that the Oyo State Judicial Panel ordered at the last adjourned date, that the car should be brought down to Ibadan before proceeding with the hearing. She therefore prayed the panel for an adjournment.

However, when asked about the status of the petitioner’s car which is now in Oyo, Mr Ojeah said that the police was yet to receive a letter ordering the release of the car, from the Oyo State Commissioner of Police. He added that the letter might be delayed as a result of other tasks before the police as regards the just concluded local government elections.

However, it was pointed out that the Oyo State Judicial Panel had written a letter to the CP demanding for the release of the car. The letter which was dated May 20, 2021 was served on the office of the CP on May 21, 2021 and a copy of the letter was served on the Police Officer in Charge of Legal, CSP Funke Fawole.

The petition was therefore adjourned till June 8, 2021 for definite hearing.

Having gone through the proceedings for today, the hearing was brought to a close at about 4:26pm.