Two former well-known Nigerian police officers Abayomi Shogunle and Dolapo Badmos were both reprimanded by police authorities for personal misconducts in 2020.
Although narratives on social media intended to show that the sanctioning of these officers and others were an immediate response to the ongoing #EndSARS protests in different cities in Nigeria, a document seen by The Guardian on Saturday shows that they appeared before force disciplinary committee long before the protests broke out last week.
Shogunle was the former head of Public Complaint Rapid Response Unit of the police. Badmos, a chief superintendent of police, was a spokesperson for the Zone 2 of the police.
The document seen on Saturday shows that both police officers were sanctioned for social media posts they published on their personal social media platforms in 2019.
The cases against Shogunle
The case against Shogunle was stated between pages 102 and 104 of the document. The document showed that he was queried on May 2, 2019.
The former PCCRU boss was accused of publishing a Twitter post that was “uncomplimentary” on April 17, 2019, in response to a video of the commander of Rapid Response Squad DCP Jimi Disu, in which Disu addressed men officers in Pidgin.”For now, don’t go and be speaking Queen’s English with them on the road. For proper understanding, talk to them in Pidgin and another way of avoiding kasala,” Shogunle’s tweet read.
The police authorities said the tweet was in violation of the Inspector-General of Police’s circular No. CB: 40001/IGP.SEC/FHQ/ABJ/VOL.1/13 issued on February 11, 2019.
Shogunle was accused of refusing to “carry out lawful instruction from a superior officer, discreditable conduct and sabotage and an unbecoming of a public officer.”
The Force Disciplinary Committee that sat on Shogunle’s case accused him of being “unrepentant, incorrigible and a habitual offender.”
FDC based its assertion on the fact that the police officer had been issued severe reprimand four other times between 2015 and 2019.
The committee recommended that he should be demoted from the post of an assistant commissioner of police to that of chief superintendent of police.
The document showed that his department recommended that he should be issued a warning letter, while the IGP and Standing Committee recommended severe reprimand and reprimand respectively.
Shogunle was removed as the head of PCRU two days after he appeared before the FDC and was posted to Ebonyi State.
“We decided it was time to take him out of that important office because he had become an embarrassment,” police told Premium Times at the time.
The cases against Dolapo Badmos
The two cases were brought against Badmos by the Force Disciplinary Committee were laid out on pages 122 to 125 of the document.
She was accused of refusing to carry out an order issued by a superior officer, scandalous conduct, sabotage and act unbecoming of an officer over an Instagram post she published on August 21, 2019, after suspected criminal Wadume was re-arrested by the police.
“For every security personnel and all others working against the well being of this nation, may you die sudden death for Nigeria to have peace,” Badmos wrote in the post the Force Disciplinary Committee described as “crude and scandalous.”
The committee also said the post ran contrary to the IGP’s directive contained in a circular No. CB: 40001/IGP.SEC/FHQ/ABJ/VOL.113/518 issued on February 11, 2019.
The circular barred officers from making “unauthorized postings of information or unguarded comments in the media.”
Badmos apologised to the committee for the post but claimed ignorance of the existence of the said circular. She also told the committee that her post brought no harm to anyone and that the post was in appreciation of the efforts of the police leadership.
Apart from the “scandalous” social media post, Badmos was also accused of disobedience to “Constituted Authority,” acting “prejudicial to the security of the state,” “discreditable conduct” and an “act unbecoming of an officer” after violating terms of a four-day leave.
The police document showed Badmos sought a four-day leave effective from March 9, 2020, to travel to Ekiti State. But she was accused of travelling out of the country instead, in the wake of COVID-19 pandemic.
Badmos appeared before FDC on March 27 and 30, 2020. She denied travelling out of the country, the document showed. She said the claims that she travelled out in March was spread by a blogger who was out to discredit her.
The document also showed that Badmos, in her defence, claimed that it was “through her concerted efforts that the ‘END SARS’ saga was brought to a resolute end, which can be attested to by Mr Segun Awosanya,” popularly known as Segalink on social media.
She was reprimanded for both cases.