3 June 2014

Nigeria: Bring Back Our Girls Protesters Sue Police for Rights Violation

Seventeen 'Bring Back Our Girls' protesters, including a former education minister, Obiageli Ezekwesili, wife of a former Chief Justice of Nigeria, Maryam Uwais have asked a Federal High Court in Abuja to declare that the Police Commissioner for Abuja does not have the power to ban protest in the Federal Capital Territory.

In an application for enforcement of their fundamental human rights filed on their behalf by Deji Morakinyo of Falana and Falana Chambers, the protesters said the order of the FCT Commissioner of Police violated their rights to freedom of conscience, expression, assembly and association guaranteed by Sections 38,39 and 40 of the Constitution and Articles 8,10,11 of the African Charter on Human and Peoples' Rights (Ratification and Enforcement) Act.

The applicants described themselves as members of a group of well-meaning Nigerian women and men under the auspices of the, "Women for Peace and Justice #BringBackOur Girls".

They asked the court to declare that the decision to ban protests and rallies in the FCT with effect from Monday, June 1, 2014 is illegal, unconstitutional, null and void as it violated their fundamental rights‎ to freedom of conscience, expression, assembly and association guaranteed by legal provisions.

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