Plan International Condemns Indiscriminate Arrests Of Women In FCT, Calls For Investigation
Plan International Nigeria has expressed worry and shock at reports of indiscriminate arrests of women especially at recreation centres and other public places at the Federal Capital Territory, Abuja.
The organization raised concerns over the reported abuse of some of the women which it said runs actions against globally acceptable principles and practices of rights observance and also contravenes the right of citizens to personal dignity as enshrined in the country’s constitution.
The Country Director of Plan International Nigeria, Dr. Hussaini Abdu in a statement in Abuja said: “It is shocking to read in the mainstream media and in the social media inhuman treatment meted out to women many of whom had sought recreation with their family members, including a nursing mother denied the right to breastfeed her two-month old baby for some period.”
While calling on the police authority and the relevant agencies of the Federal Capital Territory to order the release of the citizens still held without any verifiable evidence of contravening any known law, Dr Abdu also demanded an investigation and making public findings of claims of abuse and sexual exploitation of some of the arrested women.
“At this time of our national development, and in a democratic setting, we can no longer afford such brazen act of dehumanization of citizens. The police, given its recent efforts at reforming and redeeming its image, can no longer afford to conduct itself in manners that further strengthen public cynicism towards it,” he said.
The Nigeria Police at the nation’s federal capital territory, Abuja has in recent weeks gone on indiscriminate arrests of women, some of whom the police accused of engaging in commercial sex.
In the latest incidents of arrests, which occurred on Saturday 27th of April, about 70 women were taken into custody, including those who were said to be in the company of their husbands at night clubs.
There have been reports that the ladies taken into custody have allegedly been molested and assaulted by the arresting officers.
Dr. Hussaini Abdu stated that where there is verifiable evidence that any arrested women are engaged in commercial sex work, such persons should be taken through the due process of the law.
“Where such does not happen contravenes the laws of the land and is abuse of rights of the individuals,” he said.
The Country Director who also noted that there was no report of male clients of the women alleged to be sex workers arrested, called on the police Inspector General to order an immediate investigation into the allegations of abuse and sexual exploitation of the arrested women.