Ben Dunno, Warri
Delta State branch of the Committee for Defense of Human Rights (CDHR), has handed the Commissioner of Police in the state, Adeyinka Adeleke, a 21-day ultimatum to tackle increasing cases of extortion by his men on major high ways or face mass protest.
Issuing the ultimatum in a statement by its state Chairman, Comrade (Dr) Kehinde Taiga, who was recently elected as the National Vice President, the group warned of a mass protest involving over 5,000 of its members across the state.
While declaring that cases of extortion had become so rampant especially in remote and urban areas in the state, Taiga admonished the police boss to take necessary measures in tackling this ugly menace among his men and officers.
He noted that the ultimatum had become expedient in ensuring police authorities acted swiftly in curbing this shameful act by his men on the road, adding that all official complaints and verbal reminders by the body concerning this lawlessness had been ignored before now.
He also enjoined the police to put an end to the act of prying into people’s privacy by collecting their phones at checkpoints and going through the contents in the name of checking cyber crimes
Taiga insisted that there was no law that gives the police such right of invading people’s privacy at check points without first obtaining a warrant to do so, describing the act as criminal and unlawful.
According to him, “we are determined more than ever before to tackle this issue of extortion on major roads by the police. We cannot continue to fold our arms and watch policemen openly ripping people off their hard-earning monies on our roads in the name of checkpoints.
“This must stop and that is the more reason we are giving the police commissioner, Mr. Adeyinka Adeleye, a 21-day ultimatum to put an end to this or we’ll mobilise over 5,000 of our members on the major roads in Asaba and Warri simultaneously to protest this shameful act.
“Although the police commissioner has done well in other areas of crime-fighting and adherence to the Administration of Criminal Justice Laws (ACJL), he still needs to do more in this aspect of extortion by his men and officers on our roads.
“I’m assuring that failure to comply with this ultimatum would meet with strong resistance, as I would not hesitate to use my new office as the National Vice President of this noble body to mobilise support both locally, nationally and internationally to ensure we put a stop to this daylight robbery by the police,” he concluded.