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Senate Mandates Committee To Probe Apo Killings
The Nigerian Senate has ordered investigation into the recent shootout at an uncompleted building in the Apo District of Abuja, apparently not satisfied with the Department of State Security Services, SSS claims that the persons killed were members of the Boko Haram Sect who were using the building as a hide out.
In a motion at the resumption of Plenary on Tuesday, Sahabi Ya’u, a lawmaker from Zamfara State, noted with dismay, the shootings which he observed left nine people, mostly tri-cycle operators, dead, most of whom he said were indigenes of Zamfara, Katsina and Kano States.
About sixteen others had various degrees of serious injuries.
“The eye witness further claimed that the mid-night operation went horribly wrong when eight of the squatters were shot dead by the combined team of SSS operatives and the Army in an orgy of unrestrained shootings”, the Senator told the House.
The motion caused a debate among the lawmakers as some of them argued that it was too hasty and that the security operatives were on top of the situation.
Another legislator, Nkechi Nworgu from Abia State in the South East, argued that the Boko Haram Sect had unleashed mayhem on innocent Nigerians, even at worship centers and called for caution in dealing with the issue.
“We must not be hasty in condemning the killings and must allow thorough investigation into the matter”, she said.
However, her colleague Sadiq Yar’Adua from Katsina State, said the rights of citizens were being trampled upon and opposed the killing of innocent citizens by security operatives.
“It is important for us to establish the truth because times without number, our rights are violated”, he maintained.
The Senate Majority Leader, Victor Ndoma Egba, from Cross River State, likened the incident in Apo on Friday to international terrorist activities which have been threatening global peace.
“The Apo killings took place on Friday, on Saturday, the Westgate Shopping Mall in Nairobi, Kenya was invaded by Al Shabaab and on Sunday there was an attack by Al-Qaeda in Pakistan,” he said.
The Senate Leader expressed the belief that there was a link between what happened in Abuja and other parts of the world.
In his comments, the Senate President, David Mark, condemned terrorism and extra judicial killings, saying that details on the matter must be obtained before further actions are taken on the matter.
The Senate therefore, mandated its joint committee on National Security and Intelligence, Judiciary, Human Rights and Legal Matters to investigate the circumstances that led to the killings and report back in a week.