Nigeria’s National Human Rights Commission (NHRC) has paid N300 Million (about $700,000) in compensation to victims of police brutality.
The sums were awarded in varying sums to fifty-eight people, mainly family members of victims of rights violations.
This comes following investigations into complaints by families of victims who accused the police of extrajudicial killings, abductions, illegal arrest and prolonged detentions as well as illegal seizure of properties.
In October 2020, police brutality and violation of human rights by the Special Anti-Robbery Squad (SARS) police unit triggered a nationwide demonstration with a hashtag #EndSars.
The head of the human rights commission, Tony Ojukwu, said the payment was a gesture of apology to the victims from the government to acknowledge that their rights were violated.
Ojukwu noted that the cash payment should not be seen as representing the actual cost of the violations or harm suffered by victims. He added that the commission’s mandate is to protect the rights of Nigerians.