Over the last week, in line with the demands put up by the end SARS protesters various states in Nigeria have announced the setting up of judicial panels to probe into the excesses and atrocities committed by ex-SARS officers.
The Lagos state panel has begun sitting and is already hearing inquiries from victims of the Lekki toll gate incident and will be holding for another six months at the Lagos state court of arbitration.
The makeup of each judicial panel is largely similar from state to state. The panel will be chaired by a retired High Court Judge and other members will be selected by the State Governor. The other positions available will be from representatives of Civil Society groups, the police force, the national human rights commission, as well as two youth representatives.
Here in Lagos, it has been announced that the youth representatives for the ongoing inquiries in the state are Rinu Oduala and Majekodunmi Temitope. The panel held their first sitting on October 27th, which was open to the general public.
Three cases were read during the panel’s including the accounts of Mr Okoye Agu who spent 47 days in SARS detention, Mr. Ndukwe who became wheelchair-bound from an encounter with SARS officers.
The judicial panels continue to hold across different states for the next six months and we can only hope that, this time, the growing pressure from young Nigerians at home and in the diaspora will spur justice for the victims of state violence.
The members of the panel also paid an impromptu visit to a military hospital in Lagos but were denied access with claims that the hospital is under renovation.
Ebun Adegboruwa, a member of the panel, told soldiers, who stopped them at the gate, that the panel came to the hospital because it had intelligence that might help with its investigation.
The judicial panel will continue to sit for the next 6 months across the various states and the much needed justice is served.
Sources: The Native Mag