Unlawful detention of Ibadan Business Woman: CHRSJ exposes Lagos NAPTIP

A human rights organization, the Centre for Human Rights and Social Justice (CHRSJ) has exposed the Lagos Zonal Command of National Agency for the Prohibition of Trafficking in Persons (NAPTIP) for turning its office situated at 165b, Oba Adejobi Street, GRA, Ikeja, Lagos State, Nigeria, to Court of Law where they detained innocent citizens of Nigeria at will for weeks and months over frivolous and malicious allegations.

 

The exposure came on the heel of the recent illegal arrest and unlawful detention of a Nigeria citizen and innocent business woman, Alhaja Shakirat Ismail:-(+2348055374314/+2348083235284), of Gbagi Market, Ibadan, Oyo State, for Twelve (12) days over unfounded allegation without any single Complainant at the Lagos NAPTIP Office.

 

The rights body alleged that the innocent business woman was kept incommunicado in the Lagos illegal and unlawful NAPTIP Office custody for Twelve (12) days without trial by not taking her(Shakirat Ismail+2348055374314/+2348083235284) to any Court of competent jurisdiction for proper adjudication as stipulated by the Section 35 sub-section (5) of the amended 1999 Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria.

The group, disclosed that the innocent Ibadan business woman was arrested at his shop situated at Gbagi Market, Ibadan, Oyo State Capital, on Monday 19th of May, 2024 by the acclaimed official of NAPTIP, one Mrs. Omolara with Phone number:-(+2348122019117), who also claimed to be an Investigation Officer (I.O.) in-charge of the matter, claiming that she(Shakirat Ismail+2348055374314/+2348083235284) took one barren woman to a Herb seller woman(Alagbo Omo) in Ibadan, Oyo State in years back, for solution to this barren problem of the woman to bear a child and the God answered the prayer of the woman where she gave birth to a child thereafter.

 

The information also has it that the NAPTIP officials were looking for way to collect something from the innocent business woman at Gbagi Market, Ibadan and that was why they got her arrested without any Complainant to the matter in question and kept her in their illegal custody from 19th day of May, 2024 till 31st of May, 2024 after the intervention of the human rights body (CHRSJ).

 

Alleging further that the innocent Nigerian business woman was arrested in a braggado manner at her shop in Gbagi Market, Ibadan as if they were going to arrest an armed robber and a murderer without prior invitation and Warrant of Arrest as required of a civilized organization.

 

CHRSJ, expected that the NAPTIP officials needed to be guided during their illegal operation of arresting the innocent Nigerian business woman, Alhaja Shakirat Ismail+2348055374314/+2348083235284 by following due process of law as enshrined in the Section (33 to 46) of the 1999 Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria as amended by respecting the rights and dignity of the citizen, because no Nigerian or any agency of government gargantuan than the apex law of the federation, adding that the Nigeria citizen by birth as contained in the Section (25) of the said Constitution, has some certain privileges in their fatherland.

CHRSJ, further explained that the NAPTIP officials just turned themselves to Court of Law by collecting original credentials from the family friend of the innocent business woman that stood as surety before the woman could be given administrative bail on Friday afternoon of 31st of May, 2024, adding that they also requested for three months bank statement of account of the surety with the money(bribe) for processing of tracking and verification exercise.

 

The human rights body indicted the NAPTIP officials of acting in contrary to section 36 of the 1999 Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria as amended, where the subsection (5), declared that ,”every suspect alleges of any offence in the custody of security agents, presumed to be innocent until the Court of competent jurisdiction says otherwise.”

 

The human rights organization, had concluded arrangement to approach the Federal High Court sitting in Ibadan where they claimed the trump-up allegation were committed to seek redress for the innocent Ibadan business woman to demand for sum of Hundred Million Naira (N100,000,000) as compensation and public apology over unlawful and illegal detention by NAPTIP officials in line with Section 35 subsection (6) of the 1999 Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria as amended.

It added that the human rights body would also approach the Federal High Court sitting in Ibadan to reclaim back all the original credentials of documents collected from the surety of the innocent Ibadan business woman as contained in the Sworn Affidavit of Surety dated 31st day of May, 2024, before the Commissioner of Oath of the Lagos State High Court of Ikeja Judicial Division.

 

The group stated that the said application would be brought before the Court of competent jurisdiction with originating motion in pursuant to Section 34, 35, 36, 41 and 46(1)&(2) of the 1999 Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, as amended and Order (II) Rules 1, 2, 3, and 4 of the Fundamental Rights(Enforcement Procedure) Rules 2009 and Section 4 of the African Charter on Human and Peoples’ Rights (Ratification and Enforcement) Act Cap 10 Law of the Federation of Nigeria 1990-Articles 4,5,6,7,12,13,14 and 16 of the African Charter on Human Rights and Peoples’ Rights and under the Inherent Jurisdiction of the Court.

 

Speaking on the development, the Executive Chairman of the Centre, Comrade Adeniyi Alimi Sulaiman, through a signed press statement, which copies were made available to newsmen on Sunday, condemned the action of the NAPTIP officials, describing it as illegal, unlawful, unconstitutional, uncalled for, undemocratic, abberration , unprofessional, abomination, unacceptable and crime against God and humanity.

Sulaiman, who, doubles as Convener Save Lagos Group (SLG) disclosed that the leadership and members of the group were demoralized and flaggerbasted upon hearing the way and manner the innocent Ibadan business woman was arrested inside her shop at Gbagi Market, Ibadan by Mrs. Omolara+2348122019117 and her lawlessness team.

 

Comrade Sulaiman further disclosed that the human rights body (CHRSJ) would soon write a strong worded Petition Letter to the Presidency, Director General of the Agency(NAPTIP), Head of nation’s security agencies, the Executive Secretary, National Human Rights Commission (NHRC), Human Rights Watch (HRW), Transparency International(TI), Amnesty International (AI), international communities and host of other concerned authorities, for thorough, credible, and unbiased investigation into the false allegation leveled against the innocent Ibadan business woman on the subject matter.

 

The rights activist, then, called on the current Director General of the National Agency for the Prohibition of Trafficking in Persons (NAPTIP), Professor Fatima Waziri-Azi, for immediate removal of the Lagos Zonal Commander of the Agency (NAPTIP), one Mrs. Comfort Agboko with phone number:-(+2348034515357) without further delaying and outright dismissal of its official, Mrs. Omolara+2348122019117 who perpetrated the evil act to destroy the hard earned reputation of the agency, in order to serve as deterrent to other officials of the agency (NAPTIP).

 

He alleged that some officials, including; Omolara+2348122019117 of Lagos Zonal Command of NAPTIP, working the Federal Government agency had sat down somewhere to destroy the administration of President Bola Ahmed Tinubu with their unprofessional conduct in order to give the Tinubu led Federal Government a bad name.

“In a democratic Country where institutions and persons are subjected to the rule of law, the blatant infringement on the Shakirat Ismail’s+2348055374314/+2348083235284 fundamental rights are condemnable. What is constitutionally and professionally expected of the NAPTIP officials, upon the any complaint against the innocent Nigeria Ibadan business woman, is to conduct a thorough, credible and unbiased investigation to ascertain the veracity of the complaint and charge the innocent Nigeria Ibadan business woman before a competent Court if it found that the innocent Nigeria Ibadan business woman has a case to answer. It is not for the NAPTIP officials to hang a verdict of guilty on the innocent Nigerian business woman by keeping her in their illegal custody for Twelve (12) days without even being formally charged before a competent Court for any established offence and as well collecting original credentials from the surety.”, Sulaiman submitted.

 

Meanwhile, it would be recalled that the National Agency for the Prohibition of Trafficking in Persons (NAPTIP) had dismissed its Five (5) officials for serious misconduct ranging from corruption; demanding and receiving bribes from suspects and relatives; leaking confidential information to suspects that endangered the lives of colleagues; violation of oath of secrecy; stealing and alteration of official records and absent without official leave.

Then, while the NAPTIP spokesperson, Vincent Adekoye announced the dismissal of the officers which including a deputy director and four other senior staff of NAPTIP to newsmen in 2023.

Adekoye disclosed that the disciplinary actions were followed the approval of the governing board of the agency at its meeting on May 25, 2023 where the board considered and ratified the decision of the agency’s Senior Staff Committee (SSC) which earlier sat on the disciplinary matters in accordance with the public service rules and other extant laws and regulations.

 


Signed:

Comrade ADENIYI ALIMI SULAIMAN
(Revolutionary Alfa),
Executive Chairman, Centre for Human Rights and Social Justice(CHRSJ)
+2348038591504/+2348022697573.

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For further enquiry

(1) . The Victim:- Alhaja Ismail Sakirat:-(+2348055374314 /+2348083235284).

(2). Victim Husband, Alhaji Yusuf Ismail :-(2348108097603/+2348081879423)

(3). Lagos Zonal Commander, Mrs. Comfort Agboko:- (+2348034515357).

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