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ADMAWA: High school student falsely accused of stealing iPhone dies after torture by task force

A 17-year-old senior secondary student, Abdullahi Tukur Abba, has died after he was allegedly tortured by security personnel attached to Operation Farauta in Yola, Adamawa State. 

The SS 2 student, who was writing his SSCE, was arrested on August 5, 2023, after a neighbour accused him of stealing his iPhone 7 and lodged a complaint with the task force.

Abdullahi was allegedly beaten to a stupor by the task force before he was admitted at the Modibbo Adama University Teaching Hospital, Yola where he passed away on Wednesday, August 9. 

A counsel for the family of the deceased, Barrister Abubakar Hamman Diram, who confirmed the incident to the Daily Trust in Yola, said Abdullahi died after spending four days in a coma.

“A mobile phone was stolen in the neighbourhood and a boy claimed that he took the phone and gave it to Abdullahi. But he (Abdullahi) swore that he knew nothing about it and advised that tracking technology should be used to trace the phone, so the person holding it could explain where he got it from. Yet he was tortured until he became unconscious and consequently died today (Wednesday) at the ICU unit of the teaching hospital in Yola,” the lawyer said.

Barrister Diram had on August 7 filed a petition to the Adamawa State Commissioner of Police, copies of which were sent to the National Human Rights Commission and the Officer in Charge of Operation Farauta, seeking justice for Abdullahi who was still lying in a coma.

The deceased father, Dr Tukur Abba said he would file a court case against the people who lodged the complaint with Operation Farauta as well as those who caused his son’s death.

“The task force often derails from its assignment of fighting robbery, banditry and activities of thugs to entertaining civil and criminal cases. In the process, they end up trampling on the rights of people”, said a resident who did not want his name revealed.

Spokesman of the State Police Command, DSP Sulaiman Nguroje, confirmed the incident, saying that investigation has commenced into the case and would ensure justice prevail.

Operation Farauta, led by the military, comprises soldiers, police, operatives of the Directorate of State Security (DSS) and the Nigeria Security and Civil Defence Corps (NSCDC). It is charged with the task of fighting armed robbery, kidnapping and related crimes.

crimes.

17-year-old student falsely accused of stealing iPhone 7 dies after torture by task force in Adamawa
17-year-old student falsely accused of stealing iPhone 7 dies after torture by task force in Adamawa
17-year-old student falsely accused of stealing iPhone 7 dies after torture by task force in Adamawa
17-year-old student falsely accused of stealing iPhone 7 dies after torture by task force in Adamawa
17-year-old student falsely accused of stealing iPhone 7 dies after torture by task force in Adamawa

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