The African Women Lawyers Association (AWLA) demands Justice for Rukayat Aliyu Jibia. This height of impunity should not be happening and or tolerated in the 21st Century with Young promising Officers in prominent positions in the Police Force. It is imperative that this is nipped in the bud. This is a young patriotic Nigerian asking that the rule of law be given its pride of place.
Assaulting and causing her bodily injury or arresting her or even charging her to court is Police brutality and gross impunity. Her comment and or publication should be seen as feedback that should help the Police serve the People of Nigeria better. Her comment on Section 36 (1) (4) and of the 1999 Constitution on fair hearing is a fundamental right and principle of law. The practice of the Police parading a suspect is an abuse of this Constitutional provision. The act is also contrary to (5) of section 36 which states that every person who is charged with a criminal offence shall be presumed innocent until proved guilty.
Parading a suspect is unconstitutional and must be stopped.
The Administration of Criminal Justice (Amendment) Law (ACJL) of Lagos State, 2021 aimed at further strengthening the justice system to protect and checkmate incidences of Police harassment of innocent citizens in the State accordingly prohibits parade of suspects and compensation for victims of crime. It is pertinent to note that parade of suspects is contrary to the provisions of the Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria 1999 as amended and the Administration of Criminal Justice Act and law, that the Police is engaged and paid with tax payers money of the citizens of this country to protect and enforce.
This assault, harassment and threat to her life is in violation of her fundamental human right to freedom of expression, right to personal liberty, right to dignity of human person and right to life, should and must stop.
We live in a global village. Save the Nigerian Police from this negative publicity and work towards putting an end to Police brutality. We expect the Police to have learnt from the EndSARS Protest and should be given priority.
We'll like to hear from the IGP as soon as possible on his urgent intervention to stop this violation and illegality and bring the perpetrators to book for this illegality and affront to the Nigerian populace and a slap in the face of Women.
We at AWLA condemn this act in its entirety and call for immediate investigation and prosecution of the perpetrators. We also demand the release of the four ladies paraded for prostitution as they could not have been prostituting by themselves without a partner. Arrest for prostitution without the partner to the act of prostitution is discriminatory, stereotype and gender based violence that we frown at and reject in its entirety. We are yet to see a man arrested and paraded for prostitution. This is one of the grave consequences of unequal representation at the National Assembly and the reason the 5 gender bills were thrown out by the 9th Assembly with the annoying and worrisome chauvinist arguments. Vision 2030 the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) that Nigeria is a signatory to, is just a few years away, Nigeria seems to be sleeping and wallowing in the dark ages of men and men alone, the reason we are at the brink of collapse. They need to wake up to the reality of the great benefits of gender parity and inclusiveness which is at the very root of sustainable development Goals..
We hereby demand a written apology to the victims and compensation for the emotional and psychological trauma, pain, bodily injury and public shame and stigma associated with the unlawful arrest, parade and brutality.