Women’s rights activists in Nigeria have vowed to petition the Inspector-General of Police, Mohammed Adamu, over what they consider the misuse of police officers to intimidate and muzzle rape victims.
The last couple of weeks in Nigeria have witnessed many incidents of sexual violence, with several women coming out on social media to call out men who had sexually abused them in the past.
One of such women is Ms. Seyitan Babatayo who called out popular Nigerian singer, Dapo Oyebanjo aka D’banj, for raping her at Glee hotel in Victoria Island, Lagos, in 2018.
However, things took an unexpected turn on Tuesday when the IGP’s Intelligence Response Team, headed by the ACP Abba Kyari, was said to have arrested Ms. Babatayo on the directives of the singer and his manager, one Damian Okorafor.
It took combined efforts of several women rights activists to effect her bail on Thursday, after she had already spent one night in detention with criminals.
However, speaking to The Interview on Thursday evening, the executive director of Project Alert on Violence Against Women, Mrs. Josephine Effah-Chukwuma, said the time had come to put an end to this sort of misuse of power by some officers of the Nigerian police.
“Enough is enough. We are going to petition the IGP so that he knows what his people are doing. This is also what they did in Busola Dakolo’s case,” Effah-Chukwuma, who is one of the activists who facilitated Babatayo’s release from detention, told The Interview.
She said it had become a dangerous trend of the IGP’s IRT team to go after women who call out their violators and seek justice for their victimisation, insisting that the practice must be stopped.
Speaking on Babatayo’s whereabouts, she stated, “She has been under so much pressure, she’s so traumatised right now that we had send her to professionals so she could get psycho-social support. But she’s safe for now”.