How Osun Police Command turned to debt collector agency

A human rights body, the Centre for Human Rights and Social Justice (CHRSJ) has exposed the officers of the “X-Sqaud Department” of the Osun State Command of Nigeria Police Force(NPF), on how they turned the State Command, Osogbo to debt collector Police formation in Nigeria over business transaction.

 

The rights organization alleged that the said Command Police Officers including; Officers- in- Charge of the X-Sqaud, Investigative Police Officers (IPO), Team Leader, officer Foluke and others, were requesting for the sum of Two Million Naira (N2,000,000) as bail fund bribe for the illegal detained First Bank official, Mr. Adeniyi Sunday Talabi before Talabi would be released conditionally in their custody over the said business transaction in contrary to Section 98, 99,172, 209 and 494 of the Criminal Code and 5th Schedule, Part (1), Section 6 & 8 of the 1999 Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, as amended.

 

It added that they have turned the X-Sqaud Department of the State Command, Osogbo where bribe was institutionalized called “Bail Fund” by becoming a monster to create stigma for the hard earned reputation of the Nigeria Police Force (NPF) under the current Inspector General of Police(IGP), Dr. Kayode Egbetokun, adding that the team was informed by Talabi’s friend that his(Talabi) family was scared for the sum of Two Million Naira (N2,000,000) requested for the bail.

 

Mr. Adeniyi Sunday Talabi who has been arrested in contrary to Section 353 of the Criminal Code since Ten(10) days ago and being put incommunicado and illegally detained in the Police custody till the time of filing this report, supporting its argument with Ikonne v. The Commissioner of Police(1986)4 N.W.L.R(pt 36) and Mrs. Comfort Alaba Kolo V. NPF & Ors (2018) LPELR-43635(CA).

CHRSJ, further stated that all the actions of the Police on the subject matter were tantamount to rascality, lawlessness, and impunity which it can not stand the test of the time in the face of the legal armament of the country, adding that the Police incharge of this subject matter did not have respect for the rights of the alleged suspect (Mr. Adeniyi Sunday Talabi) and the rule of the policing engagement by requesting for the bail funds before they could release their acclaimed suspect(Sunday Talabi), who just involved in the business transaction where all the Complainants had collected up to the Eighty (80) percent of their money from Mr. Adeniyi Sunday Talabi.

 

Speaking on the matter through a signed statement by the CHRSJ’S Executive Chairman, Comrade Adeniyi Alimi Sulaiman and copies were made available to newsmen on Monday, described the conduct of the Police officers attached to the X-Sqaud of the State Command, Osogbo, as unprofessional, disgraceful, illegal, undemocratic, evil, ungodly, anathema, unjust, aberration, unlawful, crude, cruel and unconstitutional because it amounted to the violation of Sunday Talabi’s fundamental human rights as stipulated in the Chapter IV of the 1999 Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, as amended.

 

Comrade Sulaiman, who revealed that when he(Sulaiman) lead the members of the human rights body on a fact-finding mission to the X-Sqaud Department of the Command on Monday 13th day of May, 2024 around 11.02 am and the Police did not allow the CHRSJ team to see the Police acclaimed and alleged suspect (Mr. Adeniyi Sunday Talabi) till the team left the Police formation by 12.14 pm after over an hour of being keeping waiting unnecessarily where the Police team on the matter were just looking for the way to collect the sum of Two Million Naira (N2,000,000) as a bribe so as to release him because of hearing of alleging homogous amount claimed to be involved in the business transaction and the Police action was contrary to Sections 35 and 36 of the 1999 Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, as amended, adding that this is the reason why our society was the true representation of backwardness and our country could not grow in this wise and the Police that is supposed to be the friend of the Nigeria People, have become endangered species to their innocent suspects.

 

The CHRSJ Chief explained that when the group team reached the X-Sqaud Department of the State Command and met the 2.7 VVT-i Hillux Vehicle with Plate Number:- FST 510 DY, parked infront of the Police formation, insisting that the Police approach was absurd, anarchronistic, colonial and punitive which did not reflect a democratic culture but gestapo fiat culture.
In a related development, the group had concluded arrangement to report the matter to the Police authorities and others in the land for their necessary action on the subject matter, adding that the authorities including; Inspector General of Police (IGP), Chairman, Police Service Commission (PSC), AIG Zone XI of the Nigeria Police Force (NPF), Osogbo, Osun State Commissioner of Police, National Human Rights Commission(NHRC), Human Rights Watch, Transparency International (TI), American Embassy, Canadian Embassy, British Embassy, International Community and host of others.

 

Condemning the action of the said Police Officers by violating the ethics of the Nigeria Police Force (NPF) and supporting this claim with reference to the Criminal Procedure Act in the Case of Udo Ndo v. Queen 15 police officers, who shot and killed an unarmed escaping Prisoner, were convicted of murder for using excessive force”, adding that the Criminal Code CAP “C38″of the Law of Federation in the Case of Igbo v. State, Alia Agu v. State and R.V. Okon.

 

Also supporting his argument, “Justice Niki Tobi (JSC) as then was, made a pronouncement in the case of one Late Solomon Omopariola against Police Officer in Efon-Amuro Police Station, Kogi State, that “appellant had no right to arrest, detain or torture late Solomon Omopariola, not to talk of shoot him to death, there is an evidence that the appellant was drunk at the time he arrested and detained the innocent Citizen. This is very serious and Inspector General of Police (IGP) should do something about it, like my learned brother, the Police are employed to protect the Person not to violate the Citizens rights.” -Justice Niki Tobi on September, 29th and October, 3rd, 2010.”

 

But to our surprise, Sulaiman who further disclosed that the two(2) Women Police Officers including; Woman Officer Foluke attached to the X-Sqaud of the Police Command of Osun State, just came out of their Police formation and declared that it was high time they killed their suspect, Mr. Adeniyi Sunday Talabi by cutting his body part and throw it to the Osun River, noting that the Police refused to conduct an independent investigation to unravel, unveil, reveal and expose the total amount they said the acclaimed Police Complainants had collected from Mr. Adeniyi Sunday Talabi in the business transaction, adding that the human rights body urged the Police authorities to ensure the safety of live of the acclaimed suspect, Mr. Adeniyi Sunday Talabi from the hand of the Police officers at the X-Sqaud Department of the State Command.

 

Further explained that the ugly experienced of our Executive Chairman, Comrade Sulaiman and his team at the hand of the said Police officers on Monday morning, made us believed that the illegal arrest and unlawful detention of Mr. Adeniyi Sunday Talabi, were beyond this business transaction of owing each other by illegally subjected him(Talabi) to torture and unlawfully brutalized at the Police custody, supporting that it was a report made mala fide and he will be equally liable for the action by the Police on irrespective of whether he actively instigated them or not, since he had no business involving the Police in a purely civil matter(business transaction) in the first place. Such conduct which portrays disregard of the law and is aimed at using the coercive powers of the State to punishing a contracting party in a purely civil matters(business transaction) ought to be mulcted in exemplary damages. See Okafor & Anor v.AIG Police Zone 2, Onikan, Lagos & Ors (2019) LPELR-46505.

 

Sulaiman, who doubles as Convener, Save Lagos Group(SLG), therefore, urged the State Commissioner of Police, Mr. Abba Muhammad to ensure that the acclaimed X-Sqaud Police suspect to be releasing unconditionally with immediate effect for illegal arrest and unlawful detention for more than stipulated constitutional 24 hours, saying that Police lacked power to dabble into business transactions among the Nigeria people, urging the Chairman, Police Service Commission(PSC), Chief Solomon Arase and Inspector General of Police(IGP), Dr. Kayode Egbetokun to ensure the overhauling and rejigging of the X-Sqaud Department of the Osun State Command, Osogbo by transferring the whole officers of the X-Sqaud to the States like Zamfara, Niger, Yobe, Adamawa, Plateau, Benue and Borno where they were having security challenges of bandits for their policing job before they destroyed the reputation of the Nigeria Police Force (NPF).

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