The Lagos State Judicial Panel on restitution for victims of SARS-related abuses and other matters has held its valedictory sitting after 131 proceedings.
Chairman of the panel, Justice Doris Okuwobi, who read out the decisions of the panel on Monday, announced the award of N148.2 million to 23 deserving petitioners.
They include Michael Owoicho – N10 million, Fatai Ogunseye (late) – N10 million, Adeola Mukaila – N700,000, Stella Edegwa – N500,000, Akapo Adekunle – N10 million, Mustapha Ramot – N10 million, Kufre Jackson – N5 million, Ikechukwu Iloamuzor (late) – N10 million, Segun Adekoya (unlawful arrest by the police) – N1 million, Yusuf Omole – N10 million, and Segun Ishola (injuries sustained from gunshot) – N5 million.
Others are Mr and Mrs Julius Adeogun – N10 million, Okoronkwo Sylvester (late) – N10 million, Titi Agnes – N10 million, Prince Akaba – N500,000, Chukwudera Uba – N4 million, Seun Bamgbose – N10 million, Abayomi Likinyo – N4 million, James Arebha – N4 million, Juliana Adeoti – N1 million, Adaeze Samson – N2.5 million, Yemi Abdulkareem – N10 million, and Gabriel Ayedungbe – 10 million.
As a result, the panel has now awarded a total of N410 million to 70 victims.
Justice Okuwobi also revealed that the panel has concluded its investigations into the shooting at the Lekki tollgate – one of the venues of the #EndSARS protests in Lagos.
She, however, stated that the panel was working on its report which would be submitted to the state government which was expected to declare the report publicly.
The panel assured petitioners that its recommendations would include compensation to victims of the Lekki tollgate incident if any was identified.
According to the chairman, recommendations will also be made for policemen who were victims of the #EndSARS protests held in 2020.
She added that petitions that have been partly heard, and those that were not concluded or heard would be sent to the supervising Lagos State Ministry of Justice, which may set up a human rights body to handle them.
The judicial panel set up by the state governor Babajide Sanwo-Olu on October 19, 2020, was mandated to investigate cases of brutality and human rights abuses by the Police and its disbanded tactical unit.
On October 19, 2020, the Lagos State government inaugurated a nine-man Judicial Panel of Inquiry to investigate cases of brutality and human rights violations perpetrated by the police and operatives of the dissolved Special Anti-Robbery Squad (SARS).
The panel was also saddled with the investigation of the alleged shooting of protesters by the Nigerian Army on October 20, 2020, at the Lekki tollgate plaza.
It received 235 petitions between October and December 2020, while only 14 petitions were submitted on the alleged Lekki shooting incident.