By Andah John
The Nigerian Senate Tuesday condemned the increasing cases of jungle justice in the country.
In a motion sponsored by Gbenga Ashafa (APC, Lagos) and backed by the Senate Leader Ali Ndume, the red chamber urged the police to swiftly confirm or deny recent cases of mob actions in Lagos and other states.
Exactly one week ago, a picture of a boy surfaced on social media. He was severely beaten and subsequently set ablaze. While one unconfirmed account claimed he stole a phone in the Orile area of Lagos, the other said Badagry.
But the police have yet to confirm the incident. They actually said nothing of such happened in the state.
The head of the Complaint Response Unit (CRU) of the force ACP Abayomi Shogunle said no boy child, as alleged, was mobbed and burnt to death for allegedly stealing.
Shogunle, in a 3-tweet statement, however confirmed that “a yet to be identified adult male corpse” was recovered in the Orile area of the state.
Senate not satisfied
And apparently, the Senate, like many Nigerians, is not happy. It has demanded for justice, if indeed such act did happen.
The lawmakers then urged the police to fish out perpetrators of the barbarism and ensure they are brought to book.
The upper legislative chamber did not stop there. They also urged the Senate Committee on Judiciary to speed up the passage of the anti-jungle justice bill before it.
The attorney-general of the federation, state attorneys-general and the police were urged to show greater sense of duty in apprehension and prosecution of offenders.
The motion in motion
Speaking on the motion titled “Condemning the rising cases of jungle justice in the country,” Ashafa said the lack of will to guide against such behaviour explains why many tag Nigeria as one of the countries with high cases of jungle justice in the world.
The lawmaker noted that section 33 of the Nigerian Constitution guarantees the right to life. And no life of a Nigerian should be taken outside the law.
In his contribution, Shehu Sani (APC, Kaduna Central) said it was quite unfortunate that mob justice was becoming a way of life in communities, towns and villages. He attributed the situation to the loss of confidence among the people, the government and the law enforcement agencies.
Mao Ohuabunwa (PDP, Abia North) blamed the situation on the level of hunger in the country and the loss of confidence in the security agencies to defend them.
“I think I will say a nation where people begin to take laws into their own hands has a very dangerous situation and we must work to ensure that the rule of law is always strictly adhered to.
Senate President speaks
Saraki urged the Senate Committee on Police to liaise with the policemen and other security agents, adding that ”we must reassure our people that we have laws and we have agencies to protect them.”