Officers of the Nigeria Police Force have allegedly killed Anita Akapson, a niece of Nenadi Usman, former minister of finance.
Akapson, who was a staff of the National Emergency Management Agency, NEMA, was said to have been killed on Saturday night in Katampe Extension area of Abuja by four police officers.
A relation of the deceased was quoted by Daily Sun, as saying: “The police claimed Anita was shot in error but that was not true. It was deliberate recklessness of the police, especially against innocent Nigerians. How could you justify the claim by the police that Anita, well dressed in her Honda Accord car, with identity card, could be suspected as a hoodlum? She only visited her friend in Katampe district of Abuja and was driving out of the apartment when she was double crossed (barricaded) by these policemen that cut short her life.
“It was few minutes to 11 p.m. that we received a call that Anita was hospitalised in Gwarimpa Hospital. Before we could get there, she was pronounced dead. A witness told us it took the police over an hour to convey her to the hospital. That, obviously, contributed to her death.
“Some of the private security men attached to houses at the location narrated what happened. Their account corresponded with what we gathered in our own private investigation. Police obviously presented false information to the public and there is need for Nigerians to know the truth. Anita never struggled with them and she was neither found with any implicating item that could warrant such barbaric act against her. We demand that justice be done.”
The newspaper also reported a police source as saying: “What happened was that there was a reported case of armed robbery and they responded to a distress situation. There was a robbery in the area; some people were trying to steal a car around that area so the policemen responded. They got to the area and arrested two of the suspects, while the other one was trying to escape.
“This whole thing happened at a robbery scene, so it is actually an incident of stray bullet. That is what truly happened and you can make your inquiries about that. The police were able to arrest two of the suspects but, you know, in Nigeria, we give different narratives and the policeman is a vulnerable species.
“It is not like the policeman went after the lady as it is being speculated but the officer has been arrested. It was just an unfortunate issue because the target was actually not her; it was just an operational error. I think while the police patrol team was there, there was a movement that triggered the whole thing. She was in a car so the movement of the car, the way the car zoomed into the scene created suspicion so that was what happened.”
Meanwhile, the Inspector-General of Police, IGP Ibrahim Idris, has ordered the detention and investigation of its officers allegedly involved in the killing of Akapson.
In a statement on Monday, Jimoh Moshood, spokesperson of the police force, said the IGP ordered the immediate detention of the trigger-happy officers.
He said the commissioner of police in charge of the Federal Capital Territory (FCT) have been directed to bring the perpetrators of the killing to justice.
The statement read, “IGP has ordered the detention and investigation of Policemen involved in the incident that led to the death of Miss Anita Akapson.
“He deeply commiserates with the family of the deceased and assures them that justice will be done in the matter.
“The Inspector General of Police has directed the Commissioner of Police, Federal Capital Territory, Abuja to immediately detain and personally carry out a thorough investigation of policemen involved in the incident that resulted in the death of Miss Anita Akapson at Katampe Extension, Abuja on the night of Saturday, 13th October 2018; and bring the perpetrators to justice”.
Moshood said the FCT commissioner of police was already in touch with the family of the deceased and ensured Nigerians that the outcome of the investigations will be made public.
“The IGP deeply commiserate with the family of the deceased and hereby assure them that justice will be done in the matter.
“The Commissioner of Police, Federal Capital Territory Command is already in touch with the family as directed by the Inspector General of Police. The public will be informed of the outcome of investigations into the incident.”