Policing the police and safe guarding the right of the citizens

(Lara Rogers) #1

I work with Legal Aid Council of Nigeria and we basically provides free legal services to indigent person. We have lots of cases bothering on illegal arrest and breach of people’s right by the police. On Friday the 10th of August, 2018 I received a call from a young man who claimed he was arrested by the police on his way from the pharmacy simply because he has tattoo on his arm. He was told to write statement that he is a cultist. It was at this point that he called me and I told him to give the phone to the policeman whom I informed of my intention to sue the police for breach of the young man’s fundamental right. He was subsequently released with apologies. The question is, what if he has no access to a lawyer, what would have been his fate. There should be a way to check mate the excesses of policemen in other to protect the right of the citizens.

(Mary Oyier) #2

The world is full of sufferers in the hands of the police . Police officers interprets wrongly the power invested on them as law enforcers by carrying out duties in unproffesional an mood like way. @Larah

(Mohammed Aman) #3

That is quite unfortunate Larah. sadly, this is not isolated. In Kenya police harassment is quite common place, especially with the advent of war on terror. In the North Eastern regions for example, movement is actually restricted; even if you have national identity documentation they could go around and claim that it’s fake and the burden is then on you, there have also been cases of police planting things on people including drugs. They use this to extort the public mainly.

There have been numerous initiatives towards police accountability ranging from complimentary efforts such as community policing and confidential reporting campaigns. However, any action towards policing the police i feel should be protected by law otherwise the culture of impunity will almost always guarantee further oppression.

Other state authorities and functions like the IPOA (Independent Police oversight Authority) need to be given the capacity to actually carry out oversight and hold the police accountable.

(Divine Mulonge Kisali) #4

This situation is common in DR Congo. Arrests and illegal detentions of the innocents.

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