The panel in Ogun
A taxi driver in Ogun State, identified as Mayowa Ayodele has talked about his experience in police custody.
The man said that he was illegally detained for seven months and 16 days by the police because he demanded transport fare from policemen, who chartered his vehicle, SaharaReporters reports.
Ayodele disclosed this on Wednesday at the continuation of the hearing of the Judicial Panel of Inquiry and Restitution set up by the Ogun State Government to look into allegations of brutality and highhandedness by personnel of the disbanded Special Anti-Robbery Squad.
He explained that four policemen including Buhari Yusuf, Ehimere Anthony and two others he could not remember their names chartered his vehicle on March 7, 2018 but refused to pay.
When he questioned them for the illicit act, they allegedly kept him in custody and later charged him to court for pipeline vandalism.
He said, “I took them from the Mowe area to Magboro and back to Sagamu. After the ride, I requested my money, which was N4,500 but they refused to pay me. They said they were working for the government. Their Superior ordered them to lock me up.”
Ayodele claimed his vehicle was seized while he was locked up in a cell at the Motor Traffic Division of the Police in Sagamu, where he spent 16 days before he was charged for pipeline vandalism at the Federal High Court in Oke Mosan, Abeokuta.
He was, thereafter, remanded at the Oba Prison located in the state capital, Abeokuta, where he spent seven months while on trial.
After his acquittal, the victim said he made efforts to recover his vehicle but he suffered more harassment.
“When I got back to collect my car, I met another boss there at the Motor Traffic Division. He said I had the effrontery to come ask for my car and he ordered them to lock me up again. I spent another four days there before my lawyer came to bail me.”
He said he purchased the vehicle on instalment for a sum of N1,050,000 which he had not finished paying.
Ayodele said he has been jobless since he returned from prison and prayed that the government help him recover his vehicle.
“I want my vehicle back because that is what I use to feed my family. My wife has left me because I don’t have a job,” he added.