SARS killed my only son, collected N400,000 to feed him, man tells Anambra judicial panel
A school proprietor, Mr Emma Adimachukwu on Tuesday told the Anambra State Judicial Panel of Inquiry that operatives of the disbanded Special-Anti Robbery Squad (SARS) killed his only son and turned around to collect N400, 000 from him for his feeding.
Adimachukwu, an indigene of Oraifite in Ekwusigo Local Government Area but resident in Asaba, Delta State said his son Obinna Sandy, an international businessman who imported clothes from India and sold them in Onitsha was killed in 2014.
He said, “I am happy that a situation like this arose for me to talk about what happened to my son because I was intimidated and never knew I could ever get anyone to listen to me about what happened to my son.
“He graduated at Nnamdi Azikiwe University and served at National Inland Waterways Authority (NIWA). Because he read Business Administration, I opened a shop for him at Mount Olive shopping plaza, Onitsha.
“He travels to India to buy clothing. On March 14 2014, he went to Nnewi and collected $10, 000 USD owed him by a friend and proceeded to Onitsha to take delivery of his goods that just arrived. He got to the park and was told the bus conveying the goods was yet to arrive, so he waited.
“It was while they were waiting that some SARS men arrived and started shooting and people ran away but he did not run. They arrested him and his friend. As they were taking them to their office, they searched him and saw $10,000USD with him and concluded he was an armed robber.
“My son refused to let them take the money, he fought them. So, when they got to Awkuzu SARS, they told him they will send him to a place where he will fight since he knows how to fight. So, they killed him.
“When I went to see him after his friend who was smuggled out told me of it, James Nwafor (SARS boss) told his men to lock me up that I was a father to an armed robber. Some prominent people intervened and they released me. They later told me to drop money so they can be feeding my son, and they collected N400,000 from me, knowing full well that they had killed my son,” Adimachukwu lamented.
He stated that his plea to get the police unit to release the body to him for burial was rebuffed, but two years after, a friend of his told him that James Nwafor called him, asking that a message be conveyed to him (Adimachukwu) to conduct burial for his son, stating that they had discovered that he was killed in error.
Asked what his prayers to the panel were, Adimachukwu told journalists that he is not interested in remuneration, but to let the world know the many atrocities of the police unit, and to urge the government to ensure that such practices were totally abolished.
Meanwhile, another petitioner, Mr Akabuike who appeared before the panel accused the former SARS boss, Nwafor of killing his younger brother, Mr Ekene Akabuike, a final year student of Statistics in Nnamdi Azikiwe University.
Akabuike said the killing of his younger brother who was the last child of the family in 2004 caused the death of their mother because the late Ekene was very close to their mother.
“On June 3rd, 2004, they picked my brother in his room and we were told they would arraign him in court the next day, but they killed him and told us that he had been wasted.
“I learnt they were in the compound to look for one Chinedu who was the son of the landlord, but when they didn’t see him, they took Ekene. He is the last son of my mum and very dear to our mum and our mum had to die because of that experience.”
He told the panel he was seeking for N100 million compensation over the loss, but the panel chairman, Justice Veronica Umeh (Rtd) stated jocularly that the panel had only N200 million for compensation to all victims and cannot give half of it to one petitioner.
The matter was adjourned for further hearing to Tuesday next week.