The current protest in some major Nigerian cities revolving around police brutality is a reality, Nigerian sports has witnessed in the country.
From fans, sportsmen and women, they all have been victims of police brutality in Nigeria.
FOR NDUBUISI DELE UDOH
Police brutality in Nigeria didn’t start in the millennium as we can trace it to a night in Lagos, Nigeria where sprinter Ndubuisi Dele Udoh was shot dead by a policeman in a traffic stop.
Dele Udoh was a Nigerian Sprinter who lived in St. Louis, Missouri in the United States of America and a three-time NCAA All-American.
In 1981 he came home to participate in the All-Africa Athletics Championship scheduled for Benin but, was shot dead by a policeman at a Lagos checkpoint.
They were camped at the athletes’ village, Lagos.
On a Wednesday night, Dele and his colleagues decided to go out for dinner.
On their way they encountered some policemen reportedly from the Idi Araba station and, that same night Dele Ndubuisi Udoh was shot and became a history barely five months to the end of his post-graduate studies.
Recounting the aftermath, his wife, Angela explained the pain of losing her husband within 90 days of knowing and marrying the late sprinter in an interview with The Nation newspaper.
“I cried when I saw his corpse. He was shot in the head, below his temple.
I was traumatized, for that was the first time I would get close to a dead person. I was a bride, a woman, mum and a widow in one year. I am going to write a book on it.”
A statement credited to the Lagos State Police Command shamefully reads ‘Dele shot himself.’ The spokesman for the police command, however, did not tell the nation in what manner the sane star athlete took his own life.
FOR IZU JOSEPH #ENDSARS
Fast forward to the millennium and this time in Rivers state late Shooting stars defender, Izu Joseph tragically died on Sunday, October 16th after he was shot by men of the JTF in his hometown in Rivers State.
The Army insisted that the defender got killed when a patrol team raided a cultist hideout at Okarki community, in the Ahoada West area of Rivers State.
An eyewitness report says the JTF men shoot a guy in the leg during the raid.
“I was peeping from the window and, I saw that a particular guy has been shot in the leg.”
According to the woman, the JTF men asked an already injured Izu what he was doing at the cultist shrine and, the defender told them that he was a footballer and innocent of any crime.
“He brought his ID card and showed them, they looked at it and confirmed that he was a footballer, but they still shot him.” the woman added according to Pulse.
FOR TIAMIYU KAZEEM
Remo Stars player Tiamiyu Kazeem, met his untimely death in the hands of the SARS officers in Sagamu while going out with a teammate in which they were both questioned.
The SARS officers who stopped Tiamiyu Kazeem and his friend attacked them verbally that they were internet fraudsters considering the way they dressed.
One of the policemen pushed Tiamiyu Kazeem down from the vehicle out of anger and, another car coming from the back crushed him immediately.
LIKE DELE, ALMOST LIKE PETER
Just Like Dele Udoh in 1981, national record holder in both the Decathlon & Pole Vault Peter Moreno was harassed and beaten with a cutlass by the SARS element from the Nigerian Police.
Peter, who is also a soldier in the British Army, came home in preparation for the 2018 Commonwealth Games camp in Port-Harcourt.
He went out for launch and, on his way back to camp, he was stopped by SARS who beat them with a cutlass and, forced them to admit they are cultists before collecting around N50,000 Fifty thousand Naira from them.
This is the NR holder in both the Decathlon & Pole Vault. He’s also a soldier in the British Army.
Watch him share his brutal experience with SARS, how he was slapped, beaten with a cutlass & forced to declare he’s a cultist💔.#EndSARS #ENDYOUTHPROFILING #EndPoliceBrutality pic.twitter.com/zHXy3SUotH
— Nigeria Athletics (@NGAthletix) October 10, 2020