A mobile court in the Federal Capital Territory, Abuja, on Monday sentenced 27 women to one month in prison for prostitution.
The convicts, who were arrested last Wednesday and Thursday, were, however, given an option of N3,000 fine each.
Their lawyer, Jennifer Ogbogu, explained that the sex workers pleaded guilty to the charges against them and were summarily convicted and sentenced.
She said, “The ladies were arraigned before the mobile court for prostitution and were each sentenced to three months in jail with an option of N3,000 fine. We have just paid the fine and all of them have been released from custody.”
The acting FCT police spokesman, ASP Gajere Danjuma, confirmed to our correspondent that 65 ladies were arrested by the task force set up by the FCT minister, adding that 38 were released after they were profiled.
An activist, Martin Obono, who claimed to have witnessed when the women were brought to the Utako Police Station, Abuja, on Saturday, alleged that some of them were sexually abused by the security officials.
Obono, in a tweet on his Twitter handle, wrote, “Some have been assaulted with injuries in their private parts. One of the ladies arrested has a two-month-old baby. She was not allowed to breastfeed her baby despite continuous plea amid tears.
“It took the intervention of a female police officer who called the DPO to overrule the decision of the inspector at the time. The joint task force that arrested some of these girls have been allegedly molesting and assaulting them. Some even showed the bruises in their private parts.”
But the spokesman, FCT Social Welfare Secretariat, Sunday Shaka, denied the allegation, insisting that there was no way the women could have been sexually assaulted during their arrest.
He said, “The operation was jointly carried out by the police, operatives of the Nigeria Security and Civil Defence Corps, and other security agents and it was not a secret raid. So, there was no way the women would have been sexually assaulted because after they were arrested, they were taken to the Utako Police Station for profiling after which those who had no case to answer were released, while the others were detained and a charge prepared for their prosecution.”
Police Review Ban, Issuance of Tinted Glass Permit
The Nigeria Police Force, in a bid to enhance national security and curb criminal activities facilitated by the misuse of tinted glass, has concluded its review of the issuance of tinted glass permits, previously banned in June 2022.
The ban was initiated due to widespread concerns regarding the role of tinted glass in aiding heinous crimes such as kidnapping, armed robbery, the illegal transportation of firearms, human trafficking etc.
With the proposed lifting of the ban, according to a statement aigned by the Force Public Relations Officer, ACP Olumuyiwa Adejobi, stringent measures are being implemented to prevent abuse and ensure strict compliance with guidelines governing the issuance and use of tinted glass permits. ICT Analysts and Enforcement Officers nationwide will undergo a comprehensive training scheduled for the 29th of February, 2024, as a prequel to the reopening of tinted glass permit issuance.
The training will equip ICT Analysts and Enforcement Officers with the necessary skills and knowledge to regulate the registration process, guide registrants on the use of the portal where required, attend to complaints from members of the public, and enforce compliance effectively. It will focus on the intricacies of the new guidelines, emphasizing the importance of maintaining a delicate balance between public safety and individual freedoms while safeguarding national security.
The proposed tinted glass permit will incorporate distinctive features aimed at enhancing enforcement efficiency and security. These include a QR code linked to a central database for real-time verification, unique serial numbers correlated with vehicle and owner details, as well as a digital hologram ensuring authenticity and integrity, among other measures.
It is crucial to highlight that the guidelines for the issuance of tinted permits and the use of tinted glass will strictly adhere to the provisions of the MOTOR VEHICLES (PROHIBITION OF TINTED GLASS) ACT 1991 and other relevant extant laws. This strategic approach underscores the commitment of the Nigeria Police Force to prioritize public safety while upholding individual rights and national security interests.
The Nigeria Police Force remains committed to providing updates to the general public on the implementation of the reviewed process of tinted glass permit issuance, ensuring transparency and accountability in its efforts to maintain internal security.
Multinational JTF Records Multiple Achievements in Lake Chad Region
The Multinational Joint Task Force (MNJTF) has significantly stepped up its clearance operations within the Lake Chad basin, according to a statement signed by the Chief of Military Public Information, Lt. Colonel Abubakar Abdullahi, and made available to the National Association of Online Security News Publishers (NAOSNP).
The statement observed that the act is aimed at strengthening free movement as well as rejuvenating economic activities across the region.
“This initiative has led to an encouraging trend, with multiple terrorists surrendering and the interception of a major arms haul meant for insurgents’ use. From 10 to 20 February, all the 4 Sectors of MNJTF recorded various successes which portrayed the surge in troop’s effectiveness through surrender of terrorist elements, offensive operations and curbing of arms smuggling.
“Consequently, troops of Sector 1 MNJTF in Mora, Cameroon, triumphed in a notable engagement at the locality of Soueram. This offensive resulted in the neutralization of 2 Boko Haram terrorists and the seizure of 92 of linked ammunition belts, enhancing the safety of the area and disrupting the terror group’s supply lines,” the statement noted
Complementing the success of the operations, on 10th and 19th of February 2024, 2 Boko Haram members each surrendered to troops in Sectors 2 and 3, stationed in Litri, Chad, and Doron Baga, Nigeria respectively, the statement further clarified, adding that items recovered from the four repentant insurgents included a collection of arms and ammunition, significantly consisting of an AKM Rifle, an AK-47 Rifle, 3 magazines, and 29 rounds of 7.62 millimetre Special Ammunition.
The MNJTF’s persistence in offensive campaigns brought additional victories, with notable operations conducted by the troops of Sector 2 Bagasola, Chad. During a high-impact offensive at the locality of Tchokou, a Lake Chad Island, the troops inflicted casualties on Boko Haram elements and recovered 3 “teke-teke” canoes among other terrorists’ logistics items. Furthermore, in separate operations on 19 February 2024, troops recovered 5x 155 millimetre High Explosive Shells used for making Improvised Explosive Devices, debilitating the operational capabilities of the terrorist factions in the region.
In a concurrent strategic move, the Chadian Air Force, guided by reliable intelligence, conducted a successful air strike on 20th February 2024. The mission targeted Boko Haram strongholds along the southern rim of Lake Chad, near the Chad-Cameroon-Nigeria border, resulting in the neutralisation of several terrorists and destruction of terrorist equipment on water ways. Several terrorists were seen jumping into the Lake from their boats and are believed to have died.
In Sector 4 Diffa, Niger Republic, capitalizing on precise intelligence, the troops effectively disrupted an arms smuggling attempt north of Nguigmi near the Niger-Chad borderline on 10th February 2024. Their timely intervention led to the confiscation of a substantial arms cache comprising 6 x AK-47 rifles, 11x magazines, and 50 x rounds of 7.62 millimeter ammunition, dealing a substantial blow to the clandestine network supporting the insurgency.
However, the statement also noted a sad to the successful operations as two soldiers, each from Nigeria and Chad paid the supreme price while three others sustained various degrees of injuries.
“We commend their gallantry and pray for the souls of the deceased to rest in peace. The MNJTF remains devoted to its mandate of restoring peace and security while fostering the conditions necessary for economic growth and the free movement of people within the Lake Chad basin. These recent achievements underscore the task force’s resolve and effort in confronting the challenges posed by terrorist activities. The MNJTF will continue its comprehensive approach, combining military action with collaborative efforts to support affected communities in overcoming the threats to regional stability,” the statement concluded.
Cultist, 2Baba, Responsible for Killing Rivers DPO, Neutralized – Police
Police operatives in Rivers State, on Saturday, said they have eliminated one Gift Okpara aka 2 Baba, prime suspect in the murder of a Divisional Police Officer of Ahoada Division, Bako Angbashim, in September last year.
A group of criminals, during the period, murdered the DPO in an ambush attack at the Odiemudie community of Ahoada East Local Government Area and dismembered his body.
Angered by the killing, the Rivers State Governor, Similayi Fubara, placed a N100 million bounty on Okpara, and charged the police to fish him out to face justice over the gruesome murder of the police officer.
The spokesperson for the Rivers State Police Command, Grace Iringe-Koko, who confirmed the news in a statement on Monday in Port Harcourt, said the hoodlum was killed in a recent joint security raid in the Idu-Ekpeye community in Ahiada East LGA.
She said human skulls, assorted rifles, explosives, and various charms were recovered during the raid on Okpara’s hideout.
The statement read: “On February 17, 2024, at around 12:00hrs, 2BABA and his gang attacked Okogbe town and Odiokwu community in Ahoda West LGA, destroying pipelines.
“At 04:00hrs, operatives raided 2Baba’s new camp. Despite a fierce gun battle, 2Baba and his gang members escaped.
“However, at around 14:00hrs, intelligence confirmed 2Baba’s death after he lost consciousness and resuscitation attempts failed.
“Efforts are in progress to retrieve the body of the infamous killer, while investigations into the Iceland cult’s activities in the region continue.
“The Rivers State Police Command remains resolute in its duty to protect the lives and property of the citizens and it will continue to employ all necessary resources and strategies to ensure a safe and secure environment for all.”