IGP begs Edwin Clark over Police house raid
…Saraki calls for probe.
A delegation of senior police officers, led by DIG Habila Joshak (DIG DOPs), alongside some commissioners of police, visited the elder statesman and apologized on behalf of the Nigeria Police Force and the IGP.
According to a statement by DCP Jimoh Moshood, Acting Public Relations Officer, Force Headquarters, Abuja, the apology was for “the misconducts of the said Police personnel and the attendant embarrassment the search has caused on the elder statesman and his family”.
The statement also noted that Clark accepted the apology.
THE FULL STATEMENT
RE- SEARCH OF THE HOUSE OF ELDER STATESMAN, CHIEF EDWIN CLARK BY THE POLICE TODAY, 4TH SEPTEMBER, 2018.
· IGP sends high powered delegation of a DIG and other Senior Police Officers to apologize to the Elder statesman
Further to the earlier Press Statement from the Nigeria Police Force on the directives of the Inspector General of Police for immediate detention and Investigation of the Four(4) Police Personnel (including a Senior Police Officer) and an informant involved in the unauthorized, illegal and unprofessional misconduct in the Search of Chief Edwin Clark’s Residence in Asokoro, Abuja, today 4th September, 2018.
The IGP as stated in the Press Statement was not aware and did not authorize the search and has therefore sent a delegation of Senior Police Officers, led by DIG HABILA JOSHAK (DIG DOPs) along with some Commissioners of Police who visited the Elder Statesman, Chief Edwin Clark and apologized on behalf of the Nigeria Police Force and the IGP for the misconducts of the said Police Personnel and the attendant embarrassment the search has caused on the Elder Statesman and his family. The delegation was received by Chief Edwin Clark and the apology was accepted by him.
Furthermore, the Inspector General of Police has directed that while the Four (4) Police Personnel are in Detention and being investigated and tried within the Force Disciplinary Procedures before appropriate punishments are meted out to them, the IGP has directed the immediate parade of the informant(Suspect) on Wednesday 5th September, 2018 in the presence of the press and the public, before his prompt arraignment and prosecution in Court.
Meanwhile, President of the Senate, Dr. Abubakar Bukola Saraki, has condemned the unwarranted search in the Abuja home of nonagenarian, Chief Edwin Clark, by the police, and called for an open, comprehensive investigation into the incident.
Saraki while reacting to the incident described it as “unwarranted harassment of the statesman” who is known for being very vocal in expressing his views on national issues and stated that the incident must not be allowed to be covered up without the public knowing all the details, particularly concerning who gave the order, who signed the police search warrant, which officers executed it and what objective was it meant to serve.
“Chief Edwin Clark, a Second Republic Senator, former minister under the General Gowon administration is not just anybody. Yes, he is not above the law. If there is a genuine reason for his home to be searched by law enforcement agencies, nobody will object to it. However, as it now appears, for the Police to conduct a raid on the home of a man of that age on the pretence that they were looking for arms and eventually, the claim turned out to be a hoax, then something must be amiss.
“This type of action by the Police coming at this time when the nation is preparing for election is not reflecting well on the country. Such actions constitute a threat to democracy. They represent gross abuse of state institutions. Now that the Inspector General of Police has denied that the raid was never authorized, the next move should be a thorough, transparent investigation into the Senator Edwin Clark incident to prevent future occurrence.
“This kind of ugly development must stop. This country experienced peaceful change in 2015 because the government in power allowed democracy to work. If the government had allowed the flagrant abuse and misuse of state institutions to be the norm, we would not have had the change that occurred”, he stated.
Saraki reminded the government of its recent commitment to world leaders on the need to create a peaceful and conducive atmosphere necessary for a credible, free and fair elections where citizens can freely exercise their franchise, devoid of intimidation, suppression and abuse of ther fundamental human rights. He noted that incidents like the one in the home of Chief Clark is in conflict with the promise the government made to these world leaders.
“Democracy is not only about elections. Circumstances that will create tension in any part of the country or make people feel that their fundamental human rights are being trampled upon should be avoided. If a man of the calibre and status of Senator Edwin Clark could suffer such unwarranted raid on his home, then what happens to ordinary Nigerians as we move towards the 2019 polls and beyond?”, he asked.