Mr. Ganiyu Adewale Atere, a 66-year-old man, who is Managing Director of Oleta Ventures Limited and a concessionaire to the Government of Lagos State on abandoned or left behind vehicles on Lagos roads, narrated to the Lagos State Judicial Panel of Inquiry and Restitution for Victims of SARS Related Abuses, the brutality he suffered on the hand SARS for no just reason.
Ganiyu Atere told the Judicial Panel that he agreed with the Lagos State Government to be evacuating out of the Lagos road any abandon vehicles.
“That was the concession agreement that we signed. The state government has a law that stipulates that once your vehicles are pasted with removal warning stickers, the owners stand the risk of losing them as well as facing prosecution.
“Most times, we sell off carcasses of these abandoned vehicles as scraps. But we can only affect this after we might have duly informed the Police authorities in such areas,” Atere testified.
He also informed Judicial Panel that when his workers were working on a burnt tanker in Owutu area of Ikorodu, Lagos State,
on May 7, 2008, that altercation ensued between them and some street youths aiming to take the locally made gun said to be burnt together with the tanker. The action, he said, attracted the involvement SARS police in Ikeja.
According to him,
“So, I sent my general manager to follow up the case and secure the bail of my staff.
“Rather than attend to him, the investigating Police officer ignored him and insisted on seeing the managing director of the company. He threatened that the arrested workers would be prosecuted as suspected armed robbers if I failed to turn up.
“I went to the station in the company of my wife and the general manager. On getting there, the policemen held me by the hand and asked me to come with them to the back of the building. I followed them casually, thinking he wanted to discuss something with me in private.
“Before I knew what was happening, I had found myself in a strange-looking place which was disclosed as their torture room. I later got to understand why they call the room a ‘Theatre of Death.’”
Mr. Atere requested to be given N10 million as compensation for what he suffered.