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FRSC Corps Marshall Orders Investigation on Mass Beating of Citizen

George Ozor

Photo shows George Ozor lying battered and helpless

*As citizen, still in danger lists, heads to court*

The Corps Marshal and Chief Executive of Federal Road Safety Corps, Boboye Oyeyemi yesterday ordered investigation into the alleged mass beating of a citizen, George Ozor, a driver with Ben Flo Ltd, owners of Anambra state based ANIDS mass transit by his Officers and officials of the Customs service at Ijebu-Ode Unit in Ogun state.

Oyeyemi was said to be sad and shocked at the photo of citizen Ozor in coma taken at the scene of his massive beating and condemned the way Ozor was battered, intimidated and maltreated by officers paid by tax payers money and vowed to get at the root of the matter.

He therefore ordered the Zonal Commanding Officer, Federal Road Safety Corps, Zone RS2 Command Headquarters, Lagos, Assistant Corps Marshal Nseobong Akpabio, MON to investigate the incident and report back to his office within 24 hours.

A press statement from office of the FRSC media intelligence and strategic officer attached to the office of the Corps Marshall/CEO of Federal road safety, Corps Commander Bisi Kazeem confirmed the order to newsmen.

The Petition to the Core Marshall and Chief Executive of FRSC, and the Comptroller General of Customs, Col Hameed Ibrahim Ali Rtd was written by Counsel to Citizen George Ozor Kachi J. Bielu Esq of Kachi J. Bielu and Associates, Barrister and Solicitors of the Supreme court of Nigeria based in Awka Anambra state.

He condemned the display of brazen act of lawlessness and use of naked force in maltreating and intimidating a driver of the ANIDS bus, Mr. George Ozor who was beaten to coma and nearly killed him in the premises of the Unit at the toll gate. 

FRSC Boss, Corps Marshal Boboye OyeyemiThe FRSC officials and Customs officials dragged out Citizen Ozor from his vehicle and beat him up after rolling over flood water severally for allegedly killing one Mr. Ganiu, an officer of FRSC on duty who ran into him while pursuing another vehicle though nothing happened to him.

FRSC Boss, Corps Marshal Boboye Oyeyemi

The Ijebu-Ode Unit of FRSC is headed by Mr. Oladimeji Ajakaiye and efforts to resolve the matter was not successful as FRSC Lagos Sector Commander, Omeje Hyginus when contacted as a former Anambra boss of FRSC did not get involved in the case and the driver was not allowed to explain what happened.

The entire officers of FRSC in the premises and customs at the customs check point started beating him with belts, sticks, plastic seats and inflicting injuries on his body with their guns.

Meanwhile, the lawyer to Citizen George Ozor, Kachi J, Bielu has given pre-action notice for court action to seek redress occasioned by the excessive beating on Ozor to the FRSC and Nigerian Customs.

He sought s declaration of court that it is illegal and unlawful for the defendants to beat the 2nd plaintiff inflicting injuries all over his body and declaration of court that the seizure of the 1st plaintiffs’ bus with Engine No. 85342152 TR, Chasis No. JTGSX 23POD6139379 with fleet No. 147 and Reg. No. ZBL 904XA did not conform to the due process of law.

Bielu further sought for an order of court directing the Defendants (FRSC and Nigerian Customs) to pay the plaintiffs the sum of N5 million (5,000,000.00) naira as compensatory and exemplary damages for the unlawful acts of the defendants and to pay the sum of N50,000.00 (Fifty Thousand Naira) only daily from the 25/9/2015 till the vehicle is released as loss of earnings for the number of days the vehicle was datelined.

His petition tagged: ‘’Brutality, Assault occasioning Grievous harm, intimidation, Excessiveness, vandalism, naked use of power and abuse of office against officers of the FRSC and Nigerian Customs at Ijebuode unit’’ exposed the callousness of the FRSC and Customs officials. The petition alleged the officials have destroyed the engine of the vehicle with salt.

The petition read in part: ‘’It is our instruction that on Friday the 25th day of September, 2015, the Officers of the Road Safety Commission and Customs service at Ijebuode Unit in Ogun State displayed a brazen act of lawlessness and use of naked force in maltreating and intimidating a driver of the ANIDS bus, Mr. George Ozor. These Officers at Ijebuode Unit Command, that is, Officers of Federal Road Safety Commission who mounted road block at the Old toll gate Ijebuode and the Road Safety commission, nearly killed Mr. George Ozor in the premises of the Unit at the toll gate. 

‘’The Unfortunate event we humbly invite you to investigate is as follows: Mr. George Ozor, the driver of ANIDS bus with Engine No. 85342152 TR, Chasis No. JTGSX 23POD6139379 with fleet No. 147 and Reg. No. ZBL 904XA, left Lagos to Onitsha with full load of passengers.

George Ozor lying battered and helpless

‘’On approaching the Old toll gate at Ijebuode and was following a car which the Road Safety officer, Mr. Ganiu was flagging down but who refused to stop. The Road Safety officer’s attempt to kick the car with his leg was not successful and the officer fell into the lane of moving vehicle. Mr. George Ozor, the  driver applied break and did everything humanly so as not to knock down the officer, who is already near his vehicle but the vehicle slightly touched the officer Mr. Ganiu who fell down.

‘’Immediately, the other Road Safety officers in the team who were discussing at a corner descended on the driver, brought him out of the vehicle and led him into the Road Safety Unit premises at Ijebuode headed by Mr. Oladimeji Ajakaiye. Soon the driver was led into the Road Safety office, the team of custom officers at the Ijebuode toll gate trooped into the Road Safety premises to join them in beating Mr. George Ozor. Mr. George Ozor was massively beating by the Customs and Road Safety officers alleging that the driver killed Mr. Ganiu, a Road Safety officer. The effort of the driver to explain what happened did not yield any result as the entire officers of Road Safety and Customs gave him the beating of his life. The entire officers in the premises and customs at the customs check point started beating him with belts, sticks, plastic seats and inflicting injuries on his body with their guns.

‘’When the driver fainted as a result of the beating the officers rolled the driver into stagnant water in a pothole in the premises and abandoned him there for several hours. The photograph of the driver in the premises is annexed.  In fact, the fair, tall and huge member of the Customs officers mounted surveillance on him promising him that he must kill him before the end of that day.

‘’Shortly a passenger was bold to narrate what happened to people who gathered at the toll gate, was again dragged into the Road Safety premises by Customs officers and was beating mercilessly. They further dragged him to the same pothole until they allowed the passenger to go after a while. 

‘’ While the driver was lying on the mud water in the premises of the Road Safety, he heard the officers discussing with the custom officers, instructing one of them to go and buy a pack of salt and discharge the content into the engine of the vehicle. It was after a while that one of them entered the vehicle and turned on the engine and later left the vehicle. 

‘’Relief only came to the driver when the officers that took the Road safety officer, Mr. Ganiu to Roonax Specialist Hospital, Ijebu-Ode in Ogun state came back to the driver, lifted him and put him in their patrol van and took him to Ilese Police Station, Ilese in Ogun state. However, on getting to the Police Station, the Police questioned the rationale behind beating and assaulting the driver before handing him over to the Police but the officers were only apologizing to the police. 

‘’The driver was detained with the injuries all over his body. In the morning of Saturday the 26th day of September, 2015, the staff of BEN FLO LTD in company of Police went to the Roonax Specialist Hospital to visit Mr. Ganiu, the Road Safety officer and they were informed that he had long been discharged.

‘’The staff of ANIDS Mass Transit also accompanied the Police to Road Safety Office to transfer the ANIDS bus packed by the Officers in the premises, the Officers resisted every attempt made by the Police to retrieve the vehicle and informed the Staff that they will meet them in Court.

‘’The above impunity is not a typical of what is expected of officers of the Nigeria Customs Service. It is unfortunate that the officers have turned themselves a brigand, terror and threat to the society which they ought to render service to. The officers of Customs service and Road Safety at Ijebuode unit in Ogun state went all out to unleash the mayhem to an innocent driver out of shear wickedness, destroyed and vandalized the vehicle belonging to our client.

‘’For the avoidance of doubt, the officers at Ijebuode unit made a complaint to the Nigeria Police at Ilese Police Station and vowed not to allow the Police to investigate the matter. Our client was shocked that between the 25/92015 when the officers of the Commission made the complaint to Ilese Police Station and Tuesday the 29/09/2015, the officers denied both the Police and our Client access to Mr. Ganiu whom they took to the hospital and discharged him. Our client’s vehicle had been in their premises of the Road Safety at Ijebu-Ode in Ogun state since the 25/9/15, under the watch of the Customs officers who were the persons that discharged the passengers in the vehicle.

 ‘’It is pertinent at this juncture to inform you that the vehicle yields about N50,000.00 (Fifty Thousand Naira) only daily to our client’s company outside the expenses for the trip. We are not in doubt that the officers who are working in concert with officers of Road Safety knew the game they are into and that is the reason for rebuffing every meaningful attempt to resolve the issue amicably by our client rather they insisted that they will meet our client only in court.

Emeka Odogwu

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