Human rights Prof denies beating police orderly

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The Abuja-based lawyer said the claim by the police that she assaulted the officer is not true.

Abuja-based lawyer and human rights activist, Professor Zainab Duke Abiola, has denied assaulting her female police orderly, Inspector Teju Moses.

The professor, who was arrested alongside her housemaid, Rebecca Enechido, on Thursday, September 22, 2022, reportedly assaulted the orderly for refusing to do some domestic chores she assigned to her.

In a video clip that went viral on Wednesday, September 21, 2022, the officer is seen in uniform bleeding, seated on the floor, and asking to be taken to the hospital for medical attention.

Force Public Relations Officer, CSP Muyiwa Adejobi, who confirmed the arrest in a statement on Thursday, said the police were going after a fleeing domestic worker complicit in the assault.

But in a statement issued on her behalf by the Afro-European Lawyers League, the professor said it was strange that the IGP would forcefully violate “the fundamental Rights and liberties of a distinguished law- abiding citizen and proceed to forcefully take her pictures and maliciously publish same in the print and electronic media in this nascent democratic dispensation.”

The statement reads: “Our attention has been drawn to a fallacious malicious defamatory publication against our respected Alumnus of the National Institute of Policy and Security Studies, NIPPS, Professor Zainab Duke Mni alleging assault on one of her police Orderlies.

“We categorically state that this is NOT true and nothing could be further from the truth. For the records, our respected revered Professor Zainab has never assaulted anybody anywhere at any time. It is not in her character.

“The facts are: 1. That on the 20th of April 2022 the IGP approved the revalidation and deployment of police orderlies to our leader based on the fact that she is the Chief Legal Consultant to the Nigerian Police and has her office at the Force headquarters, Abuja.

“2. That the police consequently assigned a female police officer who was among the perpetrators of violence against innocent Nigerian Citizens during the ENDSARS imbroglio.

“3. That consequent upon discovery of her orderly’s involvement in police brutality against Nigerians that Professor Zainab rejected the posting of a brutal officer and returned the said orderly back to Force Headquarters to her bosses and told her bye bye on the 19th of September.

“4. That to our surprise around 10pm the former orderly returned with a vengeance banging on our gates with some dangerous weapons including a gun threatening to kill everybody in the compound and that the police orderly beat up family members of the professor’s household.

“5. That as can be seen in the video a crowd soon gathered and there was street brawling crowd fighting and loss of properties.

“6. That it is very strange that the IGP will forcefully, brutally and illegally violate the fundamental Rights and liberties of a distinguished law-abiding citizen and proceed to forcefully take her pictures and maliciously publish same in the print and electronic media in this nascent democratic dispensation.”