A commercial motorcycle rider, identified as Oluwasegun Olayinka Oluwarotimi, has narrated how operatives of the Ondo State Security Network, also known as the Amotekun Corp, abandoned him at the Federal Medical Centre in Owo after one of them shot him in the leg at Araromi area of Akure, the Ondo State capital in August 2021.
In a letter prepared by his lawyer Tope Temokun, and seen by NOHR on Saturday, he said he was at work on August 9, 2021, when operatives of Amotekun Corps shot him
Temokun wrote, “In the course of his business, he brought a passenger to Araromi, Akure, and while he was making efforts to look for smaller naira denominations to give to the passenger who paid him with a 500 naira note, an Amotekun Corps pickup van drove in, swerved towards where he parked his motorcycle by the roadside and some uniformed Amotekun officers disembarked from the vehicle and started firing gunshots in the air which caused fears amongst those around and caused people to start running.”
“Oluwasegun did not flee because he assumed the officers were carrying out their lawful duties, and especially because he had done nothing incriminating that would warrant him to flee at the sight of Amotekun officers. This made one of the Amotekun officers threaten him. “One of the officers that alighted from the van accosted him and sharply and menacingly threatened him with a gun, with orders to him as follows: ‘Bend down or else I’ll shoot your leg!’ Before our client could make sense of the whole scene and before he could complete his sentence for a compassionate plea to the officer, the officer opened fire on a gunshot on his left leg.
The human rights lawyer said his client, a father of two, was eventually amputated, and now limps on one leg as a result of the gunshot. A situation that has rendered him incapable of providing for his family’s needs.
The Lawyer subsequently filed a suit at the High Court to compel Ondo State Government, Ondo State Attorney-General, and Amotekun security outfit to jointly pay him the sum of N100 million (One Hundred Million Naira) to cover both the general and special damages he suffered because of the incident.
The state governors of the region said the security outfit will assist police, other security agencies, and traditional rulers in combating terrorism, banditry, armed robbery, and kidnapping, and also help in settling herdsmen and farmers’ contentions in the region. The federal government said the operatives have not been granted the necessary operating license to carry firearms under Part II of the Firearms Act. However, Amotekun operatives are regularly seen with firearms, mostly local guns and semi-automatic weapons
The Federal Government initially opposed the establishment of the security outfit, branding it as an illegal institution and insisting that no state government has the right to set up any form of organization to protect its territory without approval from the federal government. The federal government later backtracked.
However human rights groups on several occasions raised serious concerns about the group’s operation following allegations of human rights abuses, including the shooting of a police officer, Fatai Yekini, in the Sabo area of Oyo town by an Amotekun corps member identified as Ibrahim Ogundele on Saturday, January 2, 2021. Another incident often cited as evidence of the group’s highhandedness is the killing of a septuagenarian, Alhaji Usman Okebi, and his two sons in Ibarapa Local Government of Oyo state in January 2021