- By Anayo Ezugwu
THE Nigeria Police Force has continued to dehumanise Sergeant Amos Olaniyan for no just cause contrary to the claim by Bukola Saraki, president of Senate, that his case has been settled because the Nigerian Senate waded into the matter. Olaniyan was verbally suspended in 1994 over a crime (extortion) which has been proven over time that he did not commit. Realnews had previously reported how he was suspended on the whim of Abubakar Zsav, former commissioner of police, Oyo State, who made false allegation against him. Last month, Saraki said the Senate after its investigations resolved that the police must reinstate the suspended officer. But the Nigeria Police Force Police is yet to do so.
Perhaps, Saraki is not aware that Olaniyan is still in Limbo. At the 13th All Nigeria Editors’ Conference, in Port Harcourt, Rivers State, on Friday, September 20, Saraki, who was represented by Senator Aliyu Abdullahi, Chairman, Senate Committee on Media and Public Affairs, cited the case involving Olanyian and the police as one of the achievements of the Eight Senate. He said the Senate treated motions on unfair treatment of citizens who have petitioned it and that Olanyian’s case was among over 50 public petitions bordering on unfair employment decisions it considered.
“Motion on unfair treatment of citizens through petitions, for example motion No. 69 which has Senate resolution 069/01/15 resolved the unjust sack of a police officer Sergeant Amos Olanyian who had to suffer for 21 years as a result. The Senate resolved that the officer be reintegrated into the force, his entitlement paid with an apology,” he said.
However, Olaniyan told Realnews on Tuesday, September 26, that he is yet to be contacted by the police and they have equally failed to tell him or Nigerians why they are not obeying the Senate resolutions. He appealed to President Muhammadu Buhari, the Senate and Nigerians to appeal to Ibrahim Idris, Inspector General of Police and the Nigeria Police Force to honour the Senate resolutions and give him his due.
Realnews reports that the Senate Committee on Ethics, Privileges and Public Petitions had on December 15, 2015, recommended and ordered the police to fully re-integrate Olaniyan into the police force with a letter of reinstatement and apology. It also recommended that all his dues including promotions and entitlements should be fully granted and paid to him.
Two years after the directive was given, the police are yet to comply with the resolution. Rather, Solomon Arase, former IGP, in a letter dated February 26, 2016, stated that the Nigeria Police Force has considered the appeal submitted by Olaniyan, and graciously set aside the punishment of dismissal, and reinstated him notionally with effect from October 11, 1994, and retired with effect from August 11, 2015.
Despite the police opting to reinstate and retire Olaniyan, his salary arrears from October 11, 1994, to August 11, 2015, have not been paid, likewise his retirement benefits. All the efforts made by Realnews to know why police is yet to either pay Olaniyan’s entitlements as directed by the former inspector general of police have failed with the police declining to comment on the case.
Olaniyan has been verbally suspended by the police for 23 years for a crime he did not commit. Since his ordeal began on October 11, 1994, he has lost almost everything in the struggle to regain his source of livelihood. His wife has deserted him and his son attempted suicide earlier this year due to lack of money to pay for his school fees at Lagos State Polytechnic.
Lamenting his fate, Olaniyan told Realnews, “What the Nigeria police is doing to me is great injustice because I don’t have money to bribe them or even go to court. Abiodun Asabi, my team leader when we were suspended is still serving in the police because he was not suspended with the rest of us. He was among those who appeared before the Senate because they compelled the inspector general of police, IG, to bring him. He gave evidence and the Senate looked at it and said this is pure injustice. I appeal to Nigerians, international community, the media and the Senate to compel police to reinstate me and grant me all my entitlements.”
His ordeal started when Olaniyan and four other officers, namely: ASP Abiodun Asabi, Inspector David Oloyede, late Sergeant Joseph Akah and Corporal David Okhuarobo were on petrol duty on Lagos/Ibadan expressway when they suddenly had a flat tyre. He told Realnews that a Good Samaritan who knew their team leader Abiodun Asabi stopped and gave them N1250 to buy a fairly used tyre. While waiting for vulcanize to fix the tyre, he said that Tsav, accosted and searched them but found nothing on them. “The search took the CP to our patrol van where the N1250 given to Asabi was found.
“On this account we were verbally suspended in 1994. An orderly room trial was instituted at Zone II Onikan, Lagos, they didn’t find us guilty in the six months the trial lasted. We were discharged and acquitted but the suspension was not lifted. I have written to many authorities, including the inspector general of police, late President Umaru Musa Yar’ Adua, Senator David Mark, former senate president and others, but my suspension remains for 23 years. I’m still in possession of my police uniform and identity card till today,” he said.
– Oct. 6, 2017 @ 15:54 GMT |