By Godwin Edeh, Emmanuel Oboche and Glory Atsember
The family of 41-year-old Dickson Emberga Adeke allegedly murdered by Police at Ikpayongo in Gwer Local Government Area of Benue State has demanded the sum of N100 million as compensation.
Led on oath by the counsel to the petitioner, Sunday Irabor Esq, the wife of the deceased, Mrs Mary Adeke and other members of the deceased’s recently family narrated how he was allegedly murdered by Police along Makurdi – Aliade road axis of Ikpayongo.
In their submission before the EndSARS panel, they stated that the deceased who left home on that fateful day of 26 December, 2013 hale and hearty could not return until two days later when the family received the sad news of his death, with the police alleging he was an armed robber.
Mrs Adeke further testified before the panel that her husband died as a result of gunshot wound he sustained at the hands of policemen at a check point in Ikpayongo.
According to her, the police claimed to have buried the remains of her husband on the 24 January, 2014 but until an order of a Makurdi Magistrate Court presided over by Bakare C.I Esq (as she was then) that search was conducted and the body found at the General Hospital, North Bank, Makurdi which prompted the Benue state Health Management Board to write a letter dated 12 March, 2014 with reference number GHM/S/198/1. The letter which was signed by one Thomas Igyomon confirmed that the police actually brought the body of Dickson Emberga Adeke to the mortuary.
She further stated that subsequently, the court granted the request by the family for the release of the corpse for burial after autopsy conducted by the consultant pathologist, Dr Zuachii O.D who stated that late Adeke died as a result of severe hemorrhage from gunshot injuries.
The family of the deceased is now demanding the sum of N100 million as compensation for what they described as “untimely and unnatural death” of their son who until his death was a Senior Revenue Assistant with Makurdi Local Government Council, leaving behind his wife, two children and many relations.
During the hearing, three witnesses testified before the panel, including the wife of the deceased, with two more to testify. The matter was later adjourned to 24 March, 2021 for further hearing and possible closing of the case.
Similarly, the matter between the Secretary to the Panel and Lead Counsel, E.I Yange versus two police officers, Vincent Maigida and Mohammed Tanko also came up for defence. However, counsel to the police and O/C Legal Benue State Police Command, F.N Agwu submitted that, he discovered that a court of competent jurisdiction has already adjudicated on the matter and judgement was delivered. He therefore, aligned with the judgement of the court in the interest of justice.
It will be recalled that E.I Yange, earlier stepped down as secretary of the panel and assumed the position of a victim when he narrated how he was manhandled and illegally detained by police officers at “D” Division while the commercial motorcyclist who contravened the traffic law at the Makurdi Modern Market was allowed to go. He was taken to the station despite introducing himself.