Raymond Ozoji, Awka
A group of youths under the auspices of Behind Bars Human Rights Defenders yesterday protested against extortion and murder of one Mr Nonso Onyeme.
Onyeme was allegedly shot by a group of police officers in Agulu, Anaocha Local Government Area of Anambra state.
The group also accused the police of attempted murder of one Chigozie Okoye who was travelling with the deceased.
The youths protested round the state capital, carrying placards with inscription “Who do we call when police murder?”, “Say no to extortion,” “Police stop extorting N100” and many more.
Arriving at the Police headquarters Amawbia, the leader of the group, Mr Harrison Gwamnishu, lamented the alleged murder, describing it as most disheartening and thoroughly frightening.
In his statement, Mr. Gwamnishu claimed that the Police authority was yet to arrest the 10 officers involved in the act, 24 hours after the incident took place, neither had they visited the family.
He said the most pathetic angle to the sudden death of Onyeme was that he was an orphan who died, leaving behind his wife and a little son.
Gwamnishu insisted that it was extortion that led to the deceased death, wondering why a police officer could waste a life simply because of a token of N100.
According to him, “We wish to register our displeasure with the dastardly murder of Nonso Onyeme, a businessman from Odidiama village Agulu, Aniocha Local Government Area of Anambra state and attempted murder of Chigozie Okoye by 10 police officers led by Emerghene Benaro attached to Metro Police Patrol, Awka.
“The gruesome murder of Nonso by officers under your command whose duty is to protect lives is most disheartening and thoroughly frightening.
“Most worrisome is the fact that he was shot and all the officers jumped into their truck and ran away, leaving him to bleed to death.”
In his response, the Deputy Commissioner of Police, Chris Awolabi, described the act as regrettable, saying it was the duty of the police, as an accountable and responsible institution to protect and not to destroy the lives of the citizenry.
He assured that the case was being investigated by the police with the officers involved presently in detention, adding that they had already met with members of the family.