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Family of detained 14-year-old rape accused petitions NASS

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The family of a 14-year-old boy, detained by the since February 5, in spite of a court order to release him, on Tuesday called on the National Assembly to intervene in the matter.

The family, in the petition by its lawyer, Ishaka Dikko, SAN, addressed the inspector general of police, the chairman, Police Service Commission, the chairman, senate committee on police affairs, and the chairman, House of Representatives committee on police affairs, urging them to prevail on the police to obey the court order.

Justice Yellim Bogoro of the Federal High Court, sitting in Lafia, Nasarawa state, had, on February 24, made the order, directing the police to release the minor on bail.

Dikko stated that the 14-year-old, an SS1 student of Jofaq International College, Lafia, was arrested on February 5 by the police, Lafia, on the allegation of rape.

“In spite of the minor’s denial that he did not commit the offence, the police have continued to keep him in detention. In spite of efforts made to have them grant bail to the minor, the police have continued to detain him at the CIID.

“The boy has been unwell and had to be treated, at the expense of his parents, at the Police Clinic in Lafia. As part of efforts to secure freedom for the detained minor, we filed a fundamental rights enforcement suit before the Federal High Court, Lafia, marked:  FHC/LF/FHR/4/2021, following which Justice Bogoro, in a ruling on Feb. 24, ordered the release of the detained minor, an order the police have refused to obey.

“While no citizen should condone any commission of crime especially the most heinous offence of rape, nobody should vilify or crucify any person suspected of commission “of crime without due compliance with the law even if it is the most dreaded and heinous offence of murder,” the lawyer said.

The lawyer called on the lawmakers, the I-G and the PSC to compel the police to ensure the immediate release the minor. Dikko said disciplinary measures should be taken against the officers involved in accordance with the Police Act, “as any officer found wanting, would have clearly breached the law and abused the most revered police uniform, worn to defend the citizenry.”

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