The Department of State Services Public Relations Officer, Peter Afunanya, has said the service has not interfered in the ongoing investigation of its staff by the police.
The PUNCH last Thursday reported that a client brought an operative of the service to a fashion designer’s shop for allegedly failing to deliver some clothes on an agreed date.
The fashion designer and another person were shot during an argument that ensued.
A protest subsequently erupted as a result of the incident, which the police quelled and arrested the DSS operative.
In a statement on Thursday, Afunanya promised that justice would take its course on the matter.
The statement partly read, “The public may wish to note that the Service has not interfered with the investigation of the Police which is also detaining its staff suspected to be involved in the incident.
” The service’s position is not only to ensure justice for the victims, but it is in line with its avowed commitment to transparency, accountability and rule of law. Nevertheless, updates of this nature will always be made available till the matter is finally resolved.”
He also disclosed that the service had set up an in-house panel to investigate the matter.
He noted that the service had also visited the injured persons at the hospital, promising to offset their medical bills.
“It would be recalled that the Department of State Services had earlier issued a statement in respect of a September 7, 2023 incident involving its staff and some members of the public at Garki Market, Abuja. This is to further inform the public that the service has constituted an in-house investigative team on the matter.
“While the inquiry is ongoing, the service has visited the two injured persons at the different hospitals where they are receiving treatment. It committed to the payment of the medical bills and made required deposits in this regard. To show sincerity of purpose at the time of the visits, the Service expressed readiness to move them to its world-class medical facility in Abuja. It could have undertaken these actions even if its staff were not involved.
“Though these efforts are not, in any way, an admission of guilt (as the investigation is yet to be concluded), the Service believes that the victims deserve empathy, financial support, and justice. While it is in regular contact with their families or guardians, it will continue to follow up on their recovery and progress. However, the DSS reassures the public that the victims are upbeat and responding well to treatment.”