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NANS calls for redeployment of Ogun Police CP, accuses him of harassment


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THE National Association of Nigerian Students (NANS) has called for the redeployment of the Ogun State Commissioner of Police Lanre Bankole over what it called the illegal arrest and detention of one of its former leaders Olawale Balogun.

The NANS, in a statement by its South-West Deputy Coordinator Oladimeji Uthman, said Balogun, an ex-chairman of the union in Ogun State, was arrested by the Police on Saturday for allegedly being in a vehicle with some people who the Police had accused of being in possession of firearms.

It accused the command and its boss of unprofessional conduct, political partiality, bribery and flagrant abuse of power.

According to the statement seen by The ICIR, NANS said Bankole unlawfully arrested, detained and paraded Balogun as a political thug without any proof.

The statement noted that the Police commissioner could not substantiate the claim that Balogun was in a Hilux van where arms were recovered.

It further stated that the former students’ leader was arrested while crossing the road at Ake and was paraded as a political thug.

He added that multiple sources had confirmed that the claim was nothing but false and only being promoted by the Police to carry out their heinous actions against Balogun and others.

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While accusing the Police of violating Balogun’s right to freedom of movement, the statement claimed that the Police arrested him, even when nothing incriminating was found on him.

The NANS alleged that the Bankole, who was deployed to Ogun two weeks ago, assigned to himself, the task of being used by politicians of no substance to cause havoc with the aim of settling political scores in the state, saying, “Wale Balogun is neither a politician nor thug and as such, must be freed.”

He described the new CP as inexperienced, compromised and corrupt, alleging that he was paid the sum of N50 million by the powerful politicians from Ogun to prosecute Balogun for a crime he knew nothing about.

The students’ group called for the immediate release of Balogun, having been detained unlawfully for more than 72 hours.

Also, NANS demanded a published apology in three Nigerian dailies from the state Police command and damages of N500 million, which was to be paid within the next 25 days.

The student union also called for the immediate suspension and investigation of the Police boss by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) and Independent Corrupt Practices Commission (ICPC) for “accepting a bribe to undermine his oath of office in flagrant abuse of power and privileges by taking sides with politicians.”

The group threatened to move its national secretariat to the state in protest if its demands were not met by the Inspector-General of Police (IGP) Usman Alkali Baba and the Police Service Commission in the next 12-hours.

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When contacted, the Ogun State Police Spokesman Abimbola Oyeyemi denied his boss was bribed to arrest Balogun, saying that NANS leaders were being mischievous.

He asked if the students union leaders were there when the commissioner was being bribed.

Oyeyemi, who reiterated that Balogun was arrested alongside hoodlums, said that the command would not be intimidated by NANS.

Vincent Ufuoma is a reporter with The ICIR. He is a lover of God, truth, knowledge and justice.

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