Thursday, May 30, 2024

Rivers: Court awards N50 million to family of 20-year-old killed by police

Chibuike ‘Sleek’ Ikeagwuchi was shot dead in his neighbourhood by police officers on September 20.

• November 27, 2020
Chibuike ‘Sleek’ Ikeagwuchi
Chibuike ‘Sleek’ Ikeagwuchi (Credit: Facebook)

The Rivers State High Court on Friday ordered the police to pay N50 million to the family of late Chibuike ‘Sleek’ Ikeagwuchi.

Peoples Gazette reported how Mr. Ikeagwuchi was killed by police officers while going on an errand in his neighbourhood on September 20.

His death became another pivotal moment in the lead up to the historic #EndSARS campaign in October.

Today’s judgement is amongst the earliest to come in the wake of #EndSARS protests, which had left the police inundated by a slew of civil and criminal actions over decades of deadly and corrupt conduct of officers.

The Ikeagwuchis had sought N1 billion in reliefs from the court over the son of their son, Peoples Gazette learnt from court filings. The police initially failed to show up for hearing in the matter, but appeared on Friday with a counter-affidavit to oppose the family’s claim for damages.

Justice S.C. Amadi, however, discarded the police’s counter-arguments and proceeded to award damages to the Ikeagwuchis, whose lawyers have been representing them in the matter and other associated issues of police brutality.

Although the Ikeagwuchis said there was no amount that could compensate for their lost son, they, nonetheless, welcome the ruling as an encouraging step towards restitution for victims of decades of police brutality in Nigeria.

They also said the court’s decision would now enable them to give their son a proper burial several weeks after he was unjustly murdered.

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