The NHRC’s 11-member Independent Investigative Panel commonly referred to as #EndSARS panel- panel set up to investigate cases of police brutality, has ordered the police to meet and communicate with the family of Simon Nyamkwange, who was allegedly shot dead at the Eterna Filling Station in Abuja on April 22, 2020 by members of the redundant Special Anti-Robbery Squad (SARS) of the police.
The order was given by the panel chaired by a retired Justice of the Supreme Court, Suleiman Galadima on Monday in Abuja.
The order follows complaints by the family of the deceased that police were holding unto the remains of the deceased one year after he was reportedly killed by them.
The lawyer to the complainant, Uju Terseer told the panel that efforts by the brother of the deceased, Abraham Nyamkwange, to retrieve his brother’s corpse from the Wuse General Hospital in Abuja, for burial had been futile.
Mr. Terseer told the panel, “We have written several letters to the police, demanding the corpse of Mr. Nyamkwange for burial, but to no avail.”
The Nyamkwange family had filed a petition at the panel detailing the circumstances that led to their brother’s gruesome murder.
Meanwhile, the investigating police officer in charge of Mr. Nyamkwange’s case reportedly informed the deceased’s family that their brother was alive at the time he was brought to the police station, but bled to death due to lack of medical care.
In his filing, the petitioner revealed to the panel that the Divisional Police Officer (DPO) in charge of the Wuse Police Division, Mamman Barakwai, “informed him that there was an armed robbery attack at Eterna Filling Station,” which led to the deployment of his men.
“He (Mr. Barakwai, the DPO) sent his squad to the place (Eterna Filling Station) and that the deceased challenged them (the SARS team), that was when they opened fire on him (late Nyamkwange).”
The complaint also disclosed that a police officer Aunde Peter, extorted the sum of N200, 000 from the family of the deceased on the pretext of helping them retrieve the remains of the deceased from the police for burial.