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ENDSARS

#EndSARS: Sanwo-Olu announces terms of reference for judicial panel on police brutality

The Governor announced the terms of reference of the Judicial Panel of Inquiry and Restitution into abuses by officers of the disbanded FSARS.

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Gas station explosion: Lagos to enforce stiffer measures on operators, blames negligence, Lagos approves 33% increase for all state pensioners, Lagos introduces Dropbox facility for land documentation, China Development Bank, Sanwo-Olu sign $629m facility to complete Lekki Deep Seaport , Lagos State Government seeks partnership with insurance operators, Bond Issue: Lagos State Government to raise N100 billion for infrastructural development, Lagos State threatens to shut down Adron, Almond, 103 other estates for lacking approval

The Lagos State Governor, Babajide Sanwo-Olu, on Sunday, October 18, 2020, announced the terms of reference of the Judicial Panel of Inquiry and Restitution into abuses by the Special Anti-Robbery Squad (SARS).

The disclosure was made by the governor through a series of tweet posts on his official Twitter handle, ahead of the inauguration of the panel on Monday, October 19, 2020.

In his clarification to the general public, Sanwo-Olu said the terms of reference for the panel are:

  • To listen to and take evidence from all victims or the families of victims of SARS abuse within Lagos State (somewhat akin to what the Truth and Reconciliation Committee did in some countries). This would enable all victims and their families air and vent their grievances.
  • Upon determining the compensation payable, the Judicial Panel is to immediately issue a check in favour of the victim or their dependents.
  • The Judicial Panel is also to determine the officers (or anyone for that matter) responsible for abusing any victim and to recommend the prosecution of such persons.
  • The panel shall also have powers to make recommendations to Government on how to ensure that the police and all security agencies never abuse the rights of citizens again.
  • The Panel has the powers to compel and summon witnesses to appear before it. The State Government expects the Panel to use these powers to ensure that all necessary parties appear before the Panel to testify.

In his statement, the governor said, “We identify wholeheartedly with the calls for reforms of the Police. A better run and administered Police force would undoubtedly be to the advantage of the Government and all residents of the state. Our stance is Zero tolerance for police brutality. The setting up of the Judicial Panel is a very important step in the journey to reforming the police.”

While urging all citizens of Lagos to partner with government in this journey, Sanwo-Olu said that they appreciate and recognize the efforts of the youths which have made this necessary change inevitable.

Backstory: Following the agitation of #EndSARS protesters in Lagos, the state governor, Babajide Sanwo-Olu, announced the setting up of a Judicial Panel of inquiry and Restitution to investigate cases of brutality and human rights violations committed by operatives of the dissolved Special Anti-Robbery Squad in the state.

The panel, which is to be inaugurated on Monday, includes members representing the civil society, the police, human rights activists, the youth, and so on.

Chike Olisah is a graduate of accountancy with over 15 years working experience in the financial service sector. He has worked in research and marketing departments of three top commercial banks. Chike is a senior member of the Nairametrics Editorial Team. You may contact him via his email- [email protected]

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Business

ICPC Chairman reveals #EndSARS protests was financed with cryptocurrency

ICPC Chairman has revealed to the Nigerian Senate that the #EndSARS protest was largely funded with cryptocurrency.

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School feeding, ICPC, FIRS moves to stop tax evasion with newly launched intelligence system 

The Chairman of Independent Corrupt Practices and Other Related Commission (ICPC), Bolaji Owasanoye has revealed to the Nigerian Senate that the #EndSARS protest was largely funded with cryptocurrency.

This is as he said there are strong indications that it could be used to fund Insurgency in the country.

According to a report from Vanguard, this disclosure was made by the ICPC Chairman, during an interactive session with Senate Joint Committee on Banking, ICT, Cybercrime and Capital Market led by Senator Uba Sani on Tuesday, February 23, 2021.

READ: ICPC uncovers N9.8 billion Government money hidden in Aso Savings

The Joint committee was mandated to look at the decision of the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) to ban Cryptocurrency in Nigeria.

The ICPC boss while supporting the position of the CBN, said that the nature of operations of Cryptocurrency exposes it to money laundering and terrorism financing.

Meanwhile, the Nigerian Financial Intelligence Unit (NFIU) has said that the agency averted a $3million fraud linked to 20 bank accounts.

READ: ICPC moves against NDDC top management over corruption allegations, quizzes directors

Owasanoye further explained that the anti-graft agency currently has a number of cases linked to Cryptocurrency but is unable to track the suspects.

He brought the attention of the Senate to a period in 2018 when a number of globally rated financial institutions said their financial statements had been hacked with the perpetrators asking to be paid in Cryptocurrencies.

ICPC Chairman noted that the CBN as a regulator has the responsibility to ensure sound financial stability and it will be difficult to achieve in the case of Cryptocurrencies where the players are anonymous.

While sharing the experience of the Indian Supreme Court and how it ruled and admitted that it does not know what it is, he urged the Lawmakers to as a matter of urgency, take decisive action against Cryptocurrencies.

READ: Most powerful financial leader takes side with CBN, says Bitcoin is untrustworthy

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What you should know

  • It can be recalled that the CBN had directed the financial institutions to immediately close the accounts of such persons or entities transacting in or operating cryptocurrency exchanges, warning of severe regulatory sanctions in the event of any breach of the directive.
  • The apex bank warned the Deposit Money Banks, Non-Financial Institutions and other Financial Institutions against doing business in crypto and other digital assets.
  • The latest directive is coming after the CBN had in 2018 stated that cryptocurrencies are not legal tender and as such are illegal.

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ENDSARS

#OccupyLekkiTollGate: Lagos Attorney-General explains large police presence at Lekki toll gate

Lagos Attorney-General has stated that the State does not support the abuse of peaceful protesters.

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The Lagos State Attorney-General, Moyosore Onigbanjo says that the reason for large numbers of policemen at the Lekki toll gate during Saturday’s protest was to prevent the protest from getting hijacked by hoodlums.

The Attorney-General of the State disclosed this in an interview with Channels TV on Sunday evening.

“Our duty is to face the dictate of the law.

“The state does not derive any joy from seeing people brutalized, but we must ensure that we have a society where law and order prevails and where everyone is free and secure to go about their businesses.

“Your right to protests only extends to where the other person’s freedom of association starts,” Onigbanjo said.

READ: #EndSARS: Sanwo-Olu presents Buhari report on Lagos destruction by hoodlums

He added that the State Government wanted to prevent any problems during the protests, citing Covid-19 regulations preventing the mass gathering of people and hoodlums hijacking the protests.

“I believe that was the desire of the state government yesterday that people can protests, but think about the Covid-19 regulations, the existing laws.

“We cannot afford the sort of vandalism we saw before, the state was genuinely apprehensive that hoodlums might take over a peaceful protest, we have seen this before. And that was why the police came out in large numbers that this did not degenerate the last time,” he added.

READ: #EndSARS: Freezing of accounts may trigger further protests – Tunde Bakare

What you should know 

Nairametrics reported over the weekend that Officers of the Nigerian Police Force arrested #OccupyLekkiTollGate protesters at the Lekki toll gate on Saturday morning.

This was confirmed by multiple media images and videos on social media, showing the protesters being arrested and loaded inside police trucks and van, popularly known as Black Maria.

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