Human RightsNews

#EndSARS: Judicial Panel Summons ‘Notorious’ Ex SARS Commander Nwafor

Hearing at the Judicial Panel of Inquiry in Awka, capital of Anambra State, Southeast Nigeria continued on Thursday with the invitation of James Nwafor, a retired Chief Superintendent of Police (CSP) and former Commander at disbanded Special Anti Robbery Squad (SARS), Awkuzu office to appear and defend himself on various allegations against him.

According to Premium Times, James Nwafor appeared in 90 per cent of the 18 petitions heard so far in Anambra State.

Nwafor, for more than five years, headed the now-disbanded SARS unit of the police in Awkuzu, a town in Oyi Local Government Area of Anambra.

Justice Veronica Umeh, chairman of the panel made the order while granting the prayer of Abdul Mahmud, counsel to Emmanuel Iloanya, father of Chijioke Iloanya who was alleged to have been extra judiciously killed in 2012 by operatives of the disbanded SARS in Anambra.

Mahmud’s prayer followed the response made by the police through its counsel, Innocent Obi in which the police admitted that Chijioke died in its custody.
The lawyer said though the narrative of the police about the cause of the victim’s death was different from that of the petitioner, it was in agreement with his claim that his son died while in police custody.

He demanded that the original of the police investigation report be tendered at the panel as the photocopy presented looked too new to have been prepared in 2013.

Mahmud reminded the panel that the police had earlier averred under oath that the case file had burnt at Neni office of SARS.

The panel
The panel

He, therefore, prayed the court to summon every individual mentioned in the police response including, Nwafor, DSP Abatanume Joe, Insp. Hyacinth Nwankwo, ASP Bonaventure Ishika, Commander SARS Neni office and Chief Medical Director (CMD) Nnamdi Azikiwe Teaching Hospital(NAUTH).

The panel granted the prayer for all the police officers but directed that the CMD produce all the medical facts

The police in the report said the deceased was shot by hoodlums on a motorcycle after which he was rushed to NAUTH where he was confirmed dead.

The prayer that the original of the police investigation report be produced was also granted and the matter was adjourned to December 8.

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