An official of the Special Anti-Robbery Squad has tragically shot a man dead in Kano sparking unrest.
Men of the Nigeria Police Force
Tochukwu Iro, a 42-year-old patent medicine dealer in Kano, has been shot dead by a member of the Special Anti-Robbery Squad.
According to The Punch, a witness revealed on Thursday that the trigger-happy police officer shot dead Tochukwu Iro following an allegation that he refused to stop when ordered to do so by his team.
He said, ‘‘the deceased refused to stop when ordered by SARS operatives on France Road, adjacent to Kano Pillars Stadium. He was immediately shot on the thigh.”
The witness said Tochukwu slumped and was writhing in pains when the SARS operatives rushed him to the Murtala Mohammed Specialist Hospital in a tricycle for medical attention.
Speaking to journalist in a press briefing, the Chairman, Igbo Traders Welfare Association, Kano, Chief Emmanuel C. Amadi, said he received a call from one of his members informing him that a security agent shot one of their members to death.
“I rushed to the scene to ascertain cause of the incident but was informed that the deceased had already been rushed to the hospital where Doctors operated and removed a bullet lodged in his body.”
Amadi said he made several calls to the hospital on Wednesday and was assured that Tochukwu was responding to treatment.
He said he received another call on Thursday morning from the hospital officials, informing him that Tochukwu was dead.
Sources said 200 angry youths of Igbo extraction took to the streets in Sabon Gari, protesting the shooting to death of Tochukwu.
Amadi stated that the protesting youths called on police authorities to investigate the shooting incident and bring the culprits to book.
He said, “on that Wednesday, I was attending a market Board meeting with General Manager of Abubakar Rimi Market, security chiefs and other stakeholders when I received a call that one of our members was shot by the police along France Road.
“I immediately told the market management and they asked me to get more details over the incident. We made arrangements to ensure that he was taken to hospital for treatment. Around 9 p.m. on that Wednesday, I put a call across to Murtala Muhammad Hospital and I was told that he was responding to treatment.
“On Thursday morning, I called the hospital and was told that he was taken to the theatre for operation; but it was so sad that this afternoon (Thursday), we received a sad phone call, informing us that he could not survive the gun shot. As I am speaking to you now, Tochukwu is dead.
“I have his file here and I can attest to the fact that he was a peace-loving man. We have never known him as a criminal and that is why we wondered why such an innocent man could be killed in such a gruesome manner. Since the news of his death, we have not rested.
“The youths were here in our office this afternoon in protest over the killing of their brother. They are demanding for justice. On our own, we have pleaded with them not to take laws into their hands; and all we are asking for is that the killers of Tochukwu must be made to face justice.”
A statement signed by Kano Police Command Public Relations Officer, DSP Magaji Musa Majia, said the Commissioner of Police in the state has ordered the immediate arrest of those involved in the death.
The statement said, “the Kano State Police Command wishes to inform the public that on 27th July, 2016 at about 1200hrs a team of operatives attached to Special Anti-Robbery Squad (SARS) based on tip off along France Road, stopped one Oguchukwu Augustine ‘m’ of Odutola Street S/gari but he refused to stop.
“He was subsequently pursued and while trying to escape, he was shot at the hipbone and immediately rushed to Murtala Specialist Hospital where he gave up the ghost while receiving treatment.
“The Commissioner of Police Kano State Alhaji Rabiu Yusuf has directed for immediate arrest and detention of the team leader and his men for interrogation at the State CIID Kano.
“He also summoned the Elders of Igbo Community in Kano where he sympathizes with them and assured that Justice will be done.
“The Commissioner of Police also stated that his primary assignment is to protect life and property and will not condone any Police personnel who risk the life of innocent citizens.
“The outcome of the investigation will be made public as soon as investigation is completed before further action taken,” the statement stated.