Former SARS boss in Anambra State, CSP James Nwafor, on Tuesday, failed to honour the invitation of the state Panel of Inquiry on Police Brutality and Extra-Judicial Killings.
The panel reacting to the failure has said it has no powers to arrest those accused of brutality and extra-judicial killing, including Nwafor.
Chairman of the panel, Justice Veronica Umeh, said the mandate of the panel was to listen to petitions, investigate and recommend compensation for victims of police brutality.
The panel had earlier written and invited the Inspector General of Police, Abubakar Adamu, while also summoning ex-SARS boss in Anambra, CSP James Nwafor to appear before the panel on Tuesday, but both men failed to show up.
Umeh spoke at the panel sitting when counsel to four petitioners, Abdul Mahmud complained that neither the Inspector-General of Police nor other police officers accused by petitioners appeared before the panel.
“Our mandate is to listen to petitions, investigate and recommend compensation for victims of police brutality,” she said.
Mahmud counsel to Obiora Akabike had filed a petition against Special Anti Robbery Squad (SARS) for the extra-judicial killing of Ekene Akabuike, E. C. Adimmachukwu for the extra-judicial killing of Obinna Adimmachukwu, Ada Ilonanya and family for extra-judicial killing of Chijioke Ilonanya by SARS, and Onyinye Maureen and family for the extra-judicial killing of Okwuchukwu Onyemelukwe by SARS.
Mahmud lamented that those summoned, including ex-SARS boss in Anambra, James Nwafor refused to show up at the panel to answer to allegations against them.
He said, “If this was a regular court, where someone summoned refuse to show-up, the alternative is to issue warrant of arrest.”
Justice Umeh read out the terms of reference of the panel, insisting that it didn’t include the arrest of accused persons.