Police brutality reared its ugly in Ado Ekiti, the Ekiti State capital on Friday when a woman, Mrs. Toyin Adeyeye, her two months, old baby, Heritage, and her younger brother, Adeniyi Dada, were allegedly beaten up and detained for refusing to give bribe to Policemen at a checkpoint. The incident happened few meters away from the official residence of the state Commissioner of Police, Mr. Abdullahi Chafe.
Mrs. Adeyeye returned from the United States of America, where she had gone to deliver the baby, ten days earlier. Apart from detaining the trio, the police also impounded the black Kia Picanto car with registration number LAGOS FKJ 221 EE with which they were coming from the market. The woman was breastfeeding her baby Saturday morning when our reporter visited the police station on a fact-finding mission.
Speaking with reporters on Saturday, the woman’s husband, Mr. Akanni Adeyeye said: “My wife and her brother were returning from the market at about 3.00 pm on Friday and on arrival at the checkpoint in front of the Pavilion very close to their station, they asked for all vehicle papers and driver’s licence which were produced and they are valid. After checking all the documents, the policemen were demanding for money to be given as ‘settlement’ which my wife and her brother refused.
“My wife drew their attention to the baby that was crying in the car. Five of them were beating her at the point of arrest and on getting to the station, the beating continued. After thoroughly beating her, they obtained her statement around 10.00 pm. There are wounds on the back of my wife and face to show for it.
“On getting to the station, they now cooked up a story that my wife slapped one of them and tore his uniform which is a lie. They are telling this lie to justify their action of their cruelty to my wife, my baby and my brother-in-law. Neither my wife nor her brother slapped any policeman or tore any uniform.”
Already, the state chapter of Federation of International Women Lawyers (FIDA), has launched an investigation into the matter as the state chairperson of the body, Mrs. Funke Anoma, visited the station in connection with the incident at about 12.30 pm.
When contacted on phone, the state Commissioner of Police, Abdullahi Chafe, said the detainees slapped a policeman on duty and tore his uniform, adding that the matter was still under investigation.
Chafe said: “Those people slapped my policeman on duty and tore their uniform. Uniform is an authority and what those people did was against the law and it is not good for a civilian to slap a policeman. It is not good for somebody to prevent a law enforcement officer from carrying out his lawful duty. Somebody wearing the uniform? It is not about his age but the authority he carries. I don’t allow my men to do something contrary to the law.”