Femi Falana, Human rights lawyer says the police have no constitutional authority to authorize or restrict public assemblies, rallies, or protests as the authority is conferred in governors.
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The rights lawyer said it was unlawful and unconstitutional for the police to curb citizens from protesting.
“State governors are in charge of conventions and not the police,” Mr Falana said on Tuesday at an #EndSARS memorial organised by the African Center for Media and Information Literacy.
Photo Credit: Google
He said the question of the right to prohibit protests was finalized by the courts in the case between the All Nigerians Peoples Party (ANPP) vs. Inspector General of Police.
Mr Falana said the police had appealed the ruling and in 2007 the appeal court approved the rights lawyer’s argument and authorized a permanent injunction restricting the police from preventing citizens from assembling peaceful rallies across the country.
Photo Credit: Google
Mr Falana quoted section 1 of the Police Public Irder Act, and also section 40 of the 1999 constitution that gives Nigerians the right to assembly freely and associate with others.
He also quoted articles 10 and 11 of the African charter on human and peoples rights to peaceful assembly and association, affirming that no one can prohibit protesters from exercising their right to demonstrate.
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