BAUCHI, Nigeria – The State governor, Senator Bala Abdulkadir Mohammed, on Wednesday inaugurated a judicial panel of inquiry to probe cases of human rights abuses by the Special Anti-Robbery Squad (SARS) of the Nigeria Police Force.
The governor set up the panel of inquiry on the directive of the National Economic Council, which directed the 36 state governors and the FCT Minister to do so in their respective states to probe police brutalities.
The directive followed protests by the youth in parts of the country against the recurrent highhandedness and brutality by the SARS, with the hashtag.
Inaugurating the 17-man judicial panel at the Banquet Hall of Government House, Bauchi, the governor said the panel was set up to address the violation of citizens’ rights in the state.
The governor assured that his administration would implement the recommendations of the panel, being chaired by a retired High Court judge in the state, Justice Habibu Idris Shall, adding that those found wanting by it would be prosecuted.
According to Governor Mohammed, the panel is saddled with the responsibilities of receiving complaints and petitions from members of the public, identifying the culprits and proffering recommendations to the government has six months to submit its report.
He, however, urged members of the committee to bring their wealth of knowledge and experience to bear in the discharge of the assignment given them.
OgeneAfrican learnt that members of the judicial panel of inquiry are drawn from the Nigerian Bar Association (NBA); civil society organisations (CSOs); National Human Rights Commission (NHRC); International Federation of Women Lawyers (FIDA) and Nigeria Union of Journalists (NUJ).
Others are Jama’atul Nasrul Islam (JNI); Christian Association of Nigeria (CAN); National Council of Women Society, Bauchi State (NCWS); National Youth Council of Nigeria; NACCIMA; Miyetti Allah Kautel Hore; Miyetti Allah MACBAN; National Union of Road Transport Workers (NURTW) and National Union of Bauchi State Students (NUBASS).
The representative of the state Attorney-General and Commissioner of Justice will serve as the secretary of the panel of inquiry.