By Adibe Emenyonu
Family members and friends of 25-year-old Moses Adamu who was allegedly killed by a police officer yesterday protested at the entrance of the Edo State Police Command in Benin City.
This is as Police Duty Solicitors Scheme (PDSS)/of the Nigerian Bar Association, Benin Branch, condemned the unprovoked and extrajudicial killing of Adamu by an officer of attached to the Anti-kidnapping Unit of the Edo State Police Command.
The alleged killing took place on Friday last week.
Adamu, who was in a vehicle with his family members was hit by a bullet while the police were arresting a murder suspect, Ebuka Nwaechie who was involved in the alleged killing of Bright Orikose on 24/12/2020.
Adamu was said to have been rushed to the Edo Specialist Hospital where he later died as a result of wounds from the gun shot.The family blocked the entrance of the state command in their demand for justice.
Family members of the deceased wept uncontrollably as they urged the police authorities to unravel the reason for the killing of their son and brother.
Armed with placards and the photograph of the deceased, they said the young man went on an errand for his elder sister whose marriage was slated for last Saturday when he was shot on his way to deliver the message.
One of the friends of the deceased said: “The police claimed that their men were trailing one suspected criminal when the late Moses was hit by a stray bullet but
I can say that Adams was killed intentionally by a police officer. We are calling on the police authorities to unmask the policeman involved in the alleged extra judicial killing and ensure justice prevails.”
Addressing the angry protesters, the Deputy Commissioner of Police in charge of operations, ACP Miller Dantawaye, said the police authorities had visited the family of the deceased to express their sympathy.
He said the command would leave no stone unturned in ensuing that justice is served.
Meanwhile, the PDSS of the Nigerian Bar Association, Benin Branch, in a press release signed by Amechi Nwaozor, Coordinator; Emmanuel Okorie, Programme Officer; and Patrick Ofor, have urged the Police high command, the Edo State Government, the National Human Rights Commission (NHRC) and the National Assembly to ensure proper investigation and prosecution of the matter
The statement reads: “This incident occurred at about 4:08 pm Friday, when the late Moses Adamu, who just drove into Benin from Lagos to attend his sister’s wedding, which was slated for Saturday, September, 18, 2021.
“The sister is a law books vendor at the High Court, Benin City. The deceased before his death was with his friends on an errand for his sister, and to pick his dress from a tailor’s shop in preparation for his sister’s wedding when a vehicle with a tinted glass overtook them while a man with a pistol (not dressed in police uniform) alighted from the vehicle.
“The late Moses and his friends not sure of their identity tried to escape thinking they were kidnappers. In the process, the occupants of the tinted glass vehicle opened fire on them unprovoked. They shot at the back tire of the vehicle (up to five times) and shot at the passenger’s front door which hit Mr. Moses Adamu on his right thigh. His friends made efforts to take him to Edo Specialist Hospital, Benin City where he was received at the emergency ward at about 4:55 pm for treatment but at that time he had lost so much blood. Some of his friends volunteered to donate some pints of blood to help out but unfortunately at about 8: 44 pm, Mr. Moses became unconscious after a while and he gave up the ghost.
“The Chairman of the Lion Bar, Mr. Pius Oiwoh, was contacted by the family of the deceased and he resourcefully assisted them by making the necessary calls to the high ranking officers and other security stakeholders. The Chairman went further to send members of the PDSS to monitor the situation and as well, take up the case.
“As members of the PDSS we swung into action before the deceased passed on and discovered that the said Police officers from Anti-kidnapping Unit of State who shot the deceased did not make a report to their superior officers that they shot at Mr. Moses Adamu. Upon their visit to the station, Mr. Moses Adamu’s friends identified the men that carried out the operation and reported the matter to their superiors who then visited the hospital to see for themselves shortly before the deceased passed on. The said senior officers, however, later made money available for the medical bills at about midnight.
“While we also made the necessary arrangements to deposit the body of the deceased at the mortuary at Stella Obasanjo Hospital, Benin City at about 1:45 am 18th September 2021.”
To this end, the PDSS, has therefore, urged the Police high command, the Edo State Government, the National Human Rights Commission, and the National Assembly to ensure the proper investigation and prosecution.
The body noted that the above matter has exposed the ill-treatments innocent people suffer in the hands of security personnel who are supposed to protect them.