EXTRA JUDICIAL KILLING: Family Of Graduate Victim Demands For CorpseCrime Watch, Featured, Latest News, News, News From The State Monday, September 29th, 2014
…Petitions Jonathan, Others
FROM IGNATIUS OKPARA, Enugu
The family of the late Chukwuma Ihezie, who allegedly died in the police cell after several hours of torture, has petitioned President Goodluck Jonathan, asking him to order for an autopsy on the corpse so as to enable them conduct his burial.
It would be recalled Chukwuma died in detention six days after he was arrested by the men of the Special Anti-Robbery Squad, SARS, of the Enugu State Police Command.
The police had tagged the Engineering graduate, an armed robbery suspect, an allegation his family swiftly denied.
It was however, gathered that few months after, the police authorities, after an investigation from the force headquarters, found out that the deceased was indeed not an armed robber.
Spokesperson for the family, Mr. Chinedu Iheze said the police, after thorough investigations, discovered that their son was not a criminal.
He added that the car, laptop and other personal effects of the deceased which was sized by the policemen that arrested him, have been released to the family.
Ihezie, however, said although the police have asked them to go ahead and bury the corpse, but the family complained it would be difficult to do so as the Enugu State Police Command had allegedly turned down a request for autopsy.
Copy of the petition which was made available to newsmen in Enugu, was also sent to the Senate President, David Mark, Hon. Mathew Omegara, representing Okigwe North Federal Constituency, in the House of Representatives, the Chairman, Police Service Commission, the Acting Inspector-General of Police (IGP), the state Commissioner of Police and Executive Secretary, National Human Rights Commission, Abuja.
The petition read in parts, “With sorrowful and painful heart, we the entire family of late Mr. Sabastine Ihezie, hereby cry unto you for your urgent intervention as our last hope on the callous and extra-judicial killing of our son/brother, Chukwuma Ihezie, by some self acclaimed, untouchable gods of Special Anti Robbery Squad (SARS) of the Nigerian Police Force, Enugu State Command”.
The letter signed by Chinedu Ihezie, on behalf of the family of the deceased is praying President Goodluck Jonathan to prevail on the police authorities; to among other things, “arrest, dismiss and prosecute the officers involved in the matter; conduct a genuine post-mortem examination on Chukwuma’s corpse and release of his corpse to us for burial” the family demanded.
According to the letter, “Chukwuma Ihezie is a native of Umuozu Ezumoha in Isiala Mbano Local Government Area of Imo State. A 2013 mechanical Engineering graduate of IMT, Enugu, who out of determination engaged in cab driving to earn his living and pays his school fees.
“He also continued the menial job even after graduation…”
“The poor mother toiled without measure to feed and care for the family which was occasioned by the early death of the father. From birth till death, our son has no case of fighting, let alone criminal case anywhere in the world.
“Chukwuma Ihezie was callously murdered in police custody six (6) days after being arrested. He was alleged to have “aided” an armed robber (still at large) to commit crime which is unfounded” the petition argued.
“Note sir, on 12/1/2014, Chukwuma went for his normal cab work and was arrested by Independence layout, Enugu policemen for picking a passenger whom the police falsely labeled an armed robber. He was kept under detention in their station under a DPO by name Zakari Yau. He was later transferred to Special Anti Robbery Squad (SARS) office, by Zakari Yau, alongside with his handwritten statement. The police officer in charge of SARS Enugu state command was CSP Uche.
“On 18/1/2014, Chukwuma was shot on the spinal cord and killed by SARS without a fair hearing in any court of law.
“His corpse was dumped in UNTH Ituku Ozala, Enugu mortuary on Saturday, 18/1/2014. Chukwuma was arrested on 12/1/2014 and hurriedly killed on 18/1/2014 to cover up a secret, which could have been unveiled if he was allowed to talk”.the petition stated.
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