The Lagos State Judicial Panel of Inquiry on Tuesday awarded a total amount of N13. 5 million compensations to three victims of police brutality.
Ndukwe Ekekwe, a petitioner, was awarded N7.5 million, while two other petitioners, Andrew Okon and Isaac Adeshina, received N3 million each for the brutality they suffered in the hands of police officers.
Messrs Okon and Adeshina, in a joint petition before the panel, said they were shot at by police officers at Idimi/Egbeda road on November 22, 2011.
In another petition, the panel awarded no compensation to the family of the petitioner, Ikwechi Onwugbufor, a man allegedly killed by the police, saying they could not establish their case.
Doris Okuwobi, the chairperson of the Judicial Panel awarding compensations to victims
PREMIUM TIMES earlier reported how four victims of police brutality were awarded a total of N16.25 million on March 27.
The panel also awarded N10 million each to three other petitioners for police brutality and extrajudicial killing and another petitioner awarded N7.5 million for being unlawfully remanded in prison for six years.
With the new compensations awarded on Tuesday, a cumulative amount of N57. 25 million has so far been awarded by the panel.
Out of over 100 petitions that have been opened before the panel, judgments have been given in 13 cases.
10 out of the 13 cases received compensations in different sums, while the three petitioners received no compensations because they could not establish their cases.
As of Tuesday, the panel has disbursed N57.25 million out of the N200 million earmarked by the state government as compensation for the victims of police brutality and abuse of power.
Although the panel has 235 petitions before it, 29 percent of the compensation sum has been awarded to 10 petitioners.
The family of the late Mr Onwugbufor earlier approached the judicial panel over his unlawful killing.
The sister to the deceased, who said she was 15 years old at the time of the incident, testified before the panel. A brother of the deceased also gave testimony.
Giving the ruling of the panel on the case, Doris Okuwobi, the chair of the panel, said the family did not establish their case and the panel is unable to award compensation.”
Meanwhile, in the case of Mr Okon, a commercial bus driver who was shot by the police, and Mr Adesina, his passenger who was also shot, the panel gave N3 million compensation to each of them.
Messrs Okon and Adeshina were shot by a police officer, Nelson Bassey, because they refused to give him a bribe.
Both sustained serious gunshot injuries, while the officer eloped with the next available motorcycle. The police officer was subsequently dismissed and charged to court in 2014 for causing bodily injuries on the petitioners.
Giving a ruling on the petition, Mrs Okuwobi said the panel established that the petitioners were shot without any justification and there was no evidence that they received medical care or support from the Nigerian Police.
“This panel thereby award a sum of N3 million to Andrew Okon as compensation for the injuries sustained from the unlawful shooting by the third respondent. This panel also awards a sum of N3 million to Mr Isaac Adeshina as compensation for injuries sustained from the unlawful shooting by the third respondent.
The panel also recommended adequate training for police personnel.
In the case of Mr Ekekwe, the panel awarded a sum of N7.5 million for the brutality he suffered and the violation of his human rights by officers of the Nigerian Police.