By Abiodun Lawal
Governor Dapo Abiodun on Monday inaugurated an eight-man judicial panel of investigation to receive and investigate complaints from the public on police brutality, human rights’ violations or related extrajudicial killings.
Abiodun, speaking during the inauguration of the panel headed by retired Justice Solomon Olugbemi, reminded the members of the importance of the assignment to the continued peace and security of the state and the nation at large.
The inauguration was held at the governor’s office, Abeokuta.
He urged the panel to be fair, firm, dedicated and made objectivity their watchword, saying that they should shun acts that could impact negatively on their duty.
Abiodun also advised the stakeholders in the security, peace and conflict resolution process to give the panel all the necessary supports and cooperation needed for them to succeed.
“I wish to state that the hosting of the NEC meeting and its resolutions are demonstrations of the commitment of the President Muhammadu Buhari-led Federal Government to find long-lasting solutions to the issues raised by the protesters.
“It is with a sense of responsibility that I inaugurate this judicial panel of an investigation arising from the #ENDSARS protests for the sustained peaceful coexistence of all the people and continued development of our dear state,” he said.
He said that Ogun and, indeed, the entire nation had in the last few days been rocked with protests and agitations leading to disruption in the daily socio-economic lives of our people.
“The youth were expressing their displeasure on the activities of the Special Anti-Robbery Squad (SARS) of the Nigeria Police Force, specifically, protesting brutalities and professional misconduct of some officers of the now-defunct police unit.
“In addition to the judicial panel, there are also other two committees: Special Security and Human Rights Committee under my chairmanship and Human Rights Complaints Office with an Ombudsman and two other members.
“The complaints committee has Mr Joseph Ogunniyi (Nigerian Bar Association, NBA, Chairman, Ota branch), and Oluwaponmile Shodeinde, Ogun State Coordinator, National Human Rights Commission, and Mr Bamidele Adebayo, Director, Department of Citizens’ Rights, Ministry of Justice as members,” he said.
Abiodun appealed to the youth to sheathe their swords, saying that governments at the various levels were already acceding to their requests.