Premium Times investigative reporter, Nicholas Ibekwe, has called out popular Police officer, Abba Kyari, over what happened when he was the commander of SARS in Lagos in 2013.
Mr Ibekwe took to his Twitter page to reveal this and wrote:
In 2013, Nigeria’s so-called super cop, Abba Kyari, was the commander of SARS in Lagos.
Under his watch, a promising young man, Olúwa Seyi Adesuyi, was arrested in the Okomaiko area of Lagos by SARS operatives.
Olúwaseyi was never seen again.
School was not for Olúwaseyi. He dropped out from Adeniran Ogunsanya College of Education and started selling used mobile phones & laptops at Alaba International Market.
He found his niche. In no time he bought a used car and didn’t have to rely on stipends from his parents.
In June 2013, he was arrested by SARS operatives who claimed he bought a stolen laptop.
The SARS operatives claimed the laptop he bought was stolen from a former Commissioner of Information in Lagos, Kehinde Bamigbetan, when he was the Chairman of Ejigbo LGA.
Mr Bamigbetan had been kidnapped two months earlier and was released after paying an undisclosed ransom.
Oluwaseyi’s parents who based in Akure became worried after not hearing from their son for months.
They searched for him everywhere without success.
Someone later suggested they should go and look for him at SARS office in Ikeja.
They did and found his name on a register of arrested suspects.
They asked to see Olúwaseyi but were turned down.
“We asked to see him. We wanted to know what happened, nobody spoke to us. We were going there everyday, but nobody spoke with us. But since they said he was with them, we knew that he was alive,” Oluwaseyi’s mother told me.
They later learned that the SARS investigating office (IPO) was called “Jamaica”.
Officers of aliases, like gangsters, is one of the dysfunction of SARS. It grants them the anonymity they need to break the law at will.
They said the person you are looking for is an armed robber. Just for us to see him, they said no way. Till today we’ve never seen him,” Oluwaseyi’s mother said.
Then the swindling started.
Several weeks later, the mother received a phone call from a man who said he was detained in the same cell as Olúwaseyi.
The man said when he was being released Olúwaseyi begged him to call his family. He also instructed his family to speak to an officer he thought could help.
They policeman who refused to identify himself demanded for a bribe of N200, 000 to help recurve Oluwaseyi’s release. This family paid. But that was just the beginning of the con. The policeman collected more money from them but did not even show Olúwaseyi to his family.
I went to SARS office at Ikeja on several times but was told they did not keep a record of arrested individuals and there was no way of knowing what happened to Olúwaseyi.
“Proper records of arrests are not kept,” said CSP Peter Gana, the SARS commander in Lagos in 2018.
“If I take you to where statements are kept you will see everything is placed on the floor and on top each other. Some of them are even soaked With water. The incident happened 5 years ago. Even if I see the file, I am sure it would be unreadable,” he said.
Mr Gana suggested that I should talk to Abba Kyari, who was the commander when Olúwaseyi was arrested.
When I called him Mr Kyari said he couldn’t remember the case in question.
“Wallahi I can’t remember anything. It’s a long time. Why didn’t they looked for him until now?”
When I send him further text messages explaining the effort of his family to reach him after they realised he was missing, Mr Kyari did not reply.
Mr Olúwaseyi was never charged to court.
I hope these #EndSARS protests will assist in finding out what happened to Oluwaseyi so his family can achieve closure.
The way Police accuse and arrest even innocent people, leveling false accusations on them is alarming. If you refuse to settle, the accusations increase. ‘I no follow’ is now over 10k.