A police sergeant, Mr. Oluwole Oke, has been accused of physically assaulting the Osun State Commandant, Peace Corps of Nigeria, Mr. Paul Ayinde, after confiscating the uniform of the corps member.
The commandant told our correspondent on the telephone on Friday that one of his men was driving along the Ede-Ife Road when a team of policemen stopped him at a checkpoint at Agbungbu village.
He said the Peace Corps officer was asked to produce his vehicle’s papers and identify himself.
Ayinde stated that the corps officer did as he was instructed, but that Oke removed his beret and seized his belt, telling him that he had no right to wear the uniform because the organisation was not recognised by the laws of Nigeria.
Not satisfied with the explanation of the corps officer, the police sergeant was said to have refused to allow him to leave the spot after he had seized his cap and belt.
The corps officer was said to have been delayed for two hours before the commandant arrived at the scene.
Ayinde said he went to the policeman and pleaded with him to release the seized items and let the man go but that the police officer refused and said ‘you are stupid for telling me that.’
He said, “He grabbed my shirt and assaulted me. He threatened me with his gun; his colleagues were not part of this, though. One of my people wanted to record the scene with my phone but the policeman damaged it. At this point, one of them came and released tear gas.”
The commandant said he would have sued the policeman but he decided not to press any charges against him. He, however, called on the state Commissioner of Police, whom he described as a “very good man” to educate his men on the Peace Corps.
All efforts to get the reaction of the Osun State Police Public Relations Officer on the issue were not successful as four calls put through to her telephone did not connect.