The Edo State Judicial Panel of Inquiry for victims of SARS and related abuses, yesterday, ordered that the state Commissioner of Police, Johnson Babatunde Kokumo, (though as nominal party) and Superintendent of Police, John . E. Agaga, to appear before it for the alleged murder of five youths in Itsukwi community, Etsako East Local Government Area of Edo State.
The duo are to appear before the panel on December 21, 2020.
Counsel to the complainant, Chief U. K. Yahaya and four others, Kami Asunogie, told the panel that in less than five minutes, SP. John . E. Agaga allegedly killed five of the youths of the community over a minor conflict between two neighbouring communities that could have been resolved amicably.
He said the youths were only waiting for an address from their village heads to be read when the police rained bullets and killed them.
“The matter started on the 28 December, 2019. An issue between two communities, brother and sister, named Imiakebu and Itsukwi in Etsako East Local Government Area of Edo under the jurisdiction of the police station in Agenebode.
“The DPO, whoever invited him, came into the community, killed five youths under five minutes between 12:30 and 12:45 that he was in my village.
“He killed five youths, they died, he abandoned them, the military that were there, have to take the bodies to the mortuary with the assistance of the people of our local community that he has intimidated by his presence.
“Up till today, every attempt to seek justice has been resisted by the police and just the police, particularly the DPO himself”, he said.
The counsel said they decided to approach the panel to ask the police to release the bodies of the dead to the family for burial and to also recommend to government for compensation.
“We have come to this panel to seek for justice. The bodies of our youths that were killed, have to be released to us for burial. They have been in the morgue since December 2019. It is the DPO that is keeping them.
“We want compensation for our community. Those persons, have relations, and, they must be compensated“, he said.