5th November, 2013
The Nigeria Police Headquarters has denied complicity and bias in the case of a rape allegation against one of its men.
The Force headquarters in a statement by the Force Public Relations Officers (FPRO), Chief Superintendent of Police (CSP) Frank Mba and made available to P.M NEWS, stated that the affected policeman has not only been dismissed from the service, he is also being prosecuted at a court in Nasarawa state.
” The attention of the Police High Command has been drawn to news being circulated in some quarters, of alleged complicity of the Police Force in handling the case of alleged rape against one Cpl Anthony Onoja. Contrary to these false and clearly twisted facts, the Nigeria Police has since 13th September, 2013, dismissed Cpl Anthony Onoja.
“The ex-Policeman who allegedly raped a minor at Kabayi area of Mararaba in Nasarawa State, was charged to a Nasarawa High Court, on 15th September, 2013, for the offence of rape, under Charge sheet No NSD/77C/2013,” he noted.
According to Mba, Onoja was dismissed after an in-house administrative disciplinary panel (Orderly Room) indicted him for the disciplinary offences of discreditable conduct and conduct unbecoming of a police officer.
“A full scale criminal investigation of the alleged offence of rape was conducted by the Anti-Human Rights Section of the Criminal Investigation Department (CID) of the Nasarawa State Police Command. The Case Diary was subsequently forwarded to the Office of the Director of Public Prosecution (DPP), Nasarawa State Ministry of Justice, for legal advice.
“Based on the advice of the DPP, Anthony Onoja was charged to High Court 3 in Nasarawa State. The prosecution of the ex-Police Cpl is being conducted by the Office of the DPP and is on-going. These facts can be verified by any Nigerian or group who wishes to so do.
“The Nigeria Police Force, in the light of the foregoing, finds it rather preposterous that well meaning Nigerians will insinuate that the Force concealed and thereby condoned the condemnable action of Anthony Onoja. Without fear of contradiction, the Nigeria Police Force remains one of the most self cleansing institutions in the country and has always disciplined its erring personnel without any prompting from any quarter,” Mba said.
The police spokesman stated further that the Inspector General of Police, Muhammad Abubakar, has also appealed to the general public to desist from rendering blanket judgment against members of the Force for the singular misdeed of one of its members, reminding everyone that the Force, like any other institution in the country, is made up of persons who individually, might not be perfect in all ramifications, just as there is no perfect institution anywhere in the world.
“While the present Police Administration is determined to pursue the Reformation agenda of the Force, with the objective of bequeathing a people-friendly police to Nigerians, it will be necessary to remind all that this task demands a collective effort,” Abubakar was quoted as saying.
The IGP further assured Nigerians of the readiness of his administration to ensure that all essential components of his on-going reforms are achieved and that the Force will remain focused in the discharge of its duties.