Onyebuchi Ezigbo in Abuja
The Police Service Commission (PSC) has said it would investigate the circumstances that led to the blockade of the Kano residence of the former Governor of the state, Senator Rabiu Musa Kwankwaso, by policemen, penultimate week.
The Chairman of the commission, Mike Okiro, said the commission would also look into the role of the Kano State Police Commissioner over the stoppage of a mass wedding event for 2,000 indigent citizens of the state.
Although the state police chief had advanced security concerns as reasons for the stoppage of the event organised by Kwankwaso, loyalist of the former governor said there was an ulterior motive attached to the police action.
Addressing a group of loyalists of Kwankwaso who stormed the office of the commission in Abuja to present a petition, Okiro assured them that he would probe the claims by the group that their fundamental human rights had been infringed upon over the cancellation of the mass wedding event.
He however promised to reach out to the Inspector General of Police (IG), Ibrahim Idris, as well as the police authorities in Kano to ascertain the veracity of the claims of members of the kwankwasiyya group.
“Let me express my gratitude to you for the petition. I cannot do anything for now since you have leveled accusations which bother on breaches of fundamental human rights. I will have to listen to the other parties and investigate the matter. I assure you that action will be taken within a reasonable time frame regarding the petition,” Okiro stated.
A member of the House of Representatives, Ali Madaki, who presented the petition on behalf of members of the Kwankwasiyya group, accused the police authorities of infringing on the rights of Kwankwaso to discharge his responsibility to his constituents in the state.
He said it was unfortunate that the police in Kano barred Kwankwaso from organising the mass wedding, which is part of his constituency project.
“As loyal members of the All progressives Congress (APC) and law abiding citizens, they had to seek the intervention of the police service commission to wade into the matter.
“Recently, our leader as we know, tried to organise his constituency project as part of our mandate to the Nigerian people, and as we also know, he is a serving senator with the highest population in terms of his constituency, but that project was cancelled by the police.
“We wanted to carry it out on Saturday, they refused, saying the government had a programme that day. We wrote to them requesting that it be shifted to Sunday so that government can do theirs on Saturday even though we requested for the Saturday first.
“To our dismay, we told the couples to go and hold the wedding at their various places but to come to a particular place to collect the gifts given to them by the Kwasnkwaso. They was also blockade as police vans were everywhere and nobody was allowed to come in or out of the area.
“We felt that as citizens, protected by the constitution of the country, we do not want any breakdown of law and order in any part of the country, we felt it was necessary to come and lay our petition before you so that you can find an amicable solution to this crisis,” he said.
Also, a chieftain of the APC, who is a leader of the kwankwasiyya group and former Secretary to the State Government (SSG), Alhaji Rabiu Sulaiman Bichi, said what the police did by banning the activity of the group was wrong.
‘We are citizens of this country and we know our right and privileges, so we felt this was the right thing to do and we know you will do what is right in the best interest of all,” he said.