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Judge warns Police over rights abuse

By Taye Obateru

Jos—A high court judge in Plateau State, Justice Mohammed Sirajo, has warned the police of the consequences of going beyond their powers in the performance of their duties in view of growing awareness among the citizenry of their fundamental human rights.

He said a lot of people are resorting to garnishing of police money in banks to satisfy judgement debt which could be money meant for salary or other entitlements.

He spoke, yesterday, at a worskshop on: Human Rights and Law Enforcement in Nigeria, for top police officers organised by the League for Human Rights.

Justice Sirajo who represented the state Chief Judge, Justice Lazarus Dakyen, urged the police to keep within their powers under the law despite the obvious dilemma between enforcing the law and respecting the human rights of citizens. “When we perform our duties, we must know our limits,” he said.

He blamed some legal practitioners for initiating part of the actions for which police are blamed, saying they prefer short cuts than going through the normal process by referring purely civil matters to the police through frivolous petitions.

Director of the League for Human Rights, Shamaki Gad Peter said the workshop was a continuation of a project started in 2007 to partner the police in training officers and men of Plateau Police Command on basic principles of human rights.


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