The Rivers State Executive Council has said the Nigeria Police Force and men of the disbanded Special Anti-Robbery Squad (SARS) should compensate victims of brutality.
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The decision was taken after the five-man committee set up by Governor Nyesom Wike, to formulate a draft White Paper on the recommendations of the Judicial Commission of Inquiry that investigated brutality and violation of fundamental human rights of citizens by the Federal Special Anti-Robbery Squad in the state, submitted its report to the Executive Council at the Government House, Port Harcourt, on Wednesday.
“Executive Council has already accepted the conclusion of the White Paper Committee that compensation payable to victims of police brutality should paid by police officers, who were found culpable or by police authorities because in law, there is no way you can hold the state (Rivers) accountable for the acts of police officers, who are not agents of the state.
“As far as the issue of compensation is concerned, any compensation payable should be paid either by the police officer involved in those acts of brutality or by the Nigerian Police Force,” Prof. Zacchaeus Adangor (SAN), Rivers State Attorney General and Commissioner for Justice, said after the meeting.
He said the Executive Council has directed his office to liaise with the judiciary to ensure reports are submitted on a quarterly basis to his office in respect of the provision under the administration of Criminal Justice Law. He added that some of those provisions require that on monthly basis, the Commissioner of Police informs the Attorney General about the number of persons held in police custody and the reasons therefore.