An Estate Agent, Mr Kareem Damilari Jamiu, who five policemen extorted N705,000 last week Monday, has applauded the Lagos State Commissioner of Police, Hakeem Odumosu, over his display professionalism in handling the matter and ensuring that his money was refunded.
It would be recalled that the five policemen, from the Inspector-General of Police Special Tactical Squad (IGP STS), with office at the Lagos State Police Command Headquarters, Ikeja, left Lagos and went to Sagamu, Ogun State, to arrest Jamiu on the allegation that he was a ‘cultist and a yahoo boy.’ The policemen after asking him to pay N5million for bail, which he said he didn’t have, further allegedly beat him up and then coerced him into transferring N705, 000 to them.
The outraged Jamiu later ran to Rule of Law and Accountability Advocacy Centre (RULAAC), a nongovernmental organisation, seeking justice.
When the matter got to Odumosu, he was infuriated and ordered the arrest of the policemen. On Friday, an elated Jamiu was invited and all his money refunded.
It was gathered that after the extortion story Crime Focus learnt that one of the policemen collapsed and was hospitalised; another had his wife begging the mother of Jamiu to temper justice with mercy.
The Executive Director of RULAAC, Mr Okechukwu Nwanguma, reacting to the latest development, said that he was happy with the turnout of the incident. This was also as he praised Odumosu for his promptness in handling the investigation and arrest of the policemen.
Nwanguma added: “A lot of police officers assemble and go about illegal operations using the name of the IGP. They claim they are one IGP team or the other. The team from Lagos that went to Ogun State and carried out this recent illegal operation and now got arrested for robbing their victim, are now begging the victim, after initially threatening him. This team also claimed to be members of the IGP Tactical Squad. The wife of the team leader also called me crying; she’s also a police officer and a nursing mother. She’s begging that we should not let her husband and his team be dismissed. Jamiu was invited by the Lagos State Police Public Relations Officer (PPRO), Bala Elkana, and handed back the money extorted from him by those five rogue officers.
“Unfortunately, there are many rogue police officers on the prowl who go about, in the name of the IGP squad or the other, harassing and robbing innocent citizens. RULAAC will continue to be on the alert, beaming its searchlight on such rogue officers to expose them. We will continue to work for and with police officers who do their work professionally and humanely. The police work under very difficult conditions which often make them prone to misbehaviour. Yet, this does not justify extremely criminal conducts. While we will continue to advocate for improvement in the working conditions of the police as a means to fight corruption and humanise the service, we will continue to expose those who choose to abuse their authority.”