Ikechukwu, a young Nigerian man has opened up to NoStrings about how he was harassed, threatened and accused of homosexuality by officers of the Nigeria police force who later extorted money from him.
The victim related to NoStrings how about two week ago, he was walking with a friend around Festac town in Lagos, when he was approached by some police officers who stopped them for interrogation. After the interrogation, they collected his phone, went through its contents, and then accused him of homosexuality.
The police later took him into custody detaining him for five days before they asked him to pay the sum of 105,000.00 Naira or go to court to face charges for homosexuality.
*Ikechukwu couldn’t afford the requested amount, so he agreed that the case be charged to court.
The case was eventually taken to court, but was later withdrawn by the police after they collected some money from Ikechukwu.
The Nigerian police are now using the country’s anti-gay law as a leverage to threaten and extort money from innocent Nigerian citizens.
It is completely unlawful for the Nigeria police to detain an individual for more than 24 hours, ask for bribe, or even illegally access the contents of a person’s mobile phone without a warrant. This is a shame and a dent of image on the Nigerian police force and all it claims to stand for.
It can be recalled that in 2015, the Nigerian Inspector – General of police, Solomon Arase in a statement signed by the Force Secretary AIG Patrick D. Dukumor, warned police officers to desist from indiscriminate checking of personal information on mobile phones of members of the public.
He also reminded officers to ensure the protection of the Rights to private and family life as enshrined in the constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, 1999 as amended; Section 37 of the constitution which states “The privacy of citizens, their homes, correspondence, telephone conversations is hereby guaranteed and protected”
So what does this mean? Clearly, Ikechukwu’s right to privacy has been violated.
This is a classic case of human rights violation, and we here at NoStrings call the attention of the IG of the Nigerian police force to resound a warning and penalize offenders.
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*Please note that Ikechukwu is not the victim’s real name, as we have changed it to protect his identity.