Human rights lawyer, Femi Falana (SAN) has described the arrest of some June 12 protesters as illegal.
Falana who demanded an apology from the police to all protesters arrested in Abuja, Lagos, and Calabar during the peaceful protests, accused the police of violating the freedom of expression with the arrests.
He added that provisions of Section 94 (4) of the Electoral Act 2010 (as amended), limit the police to the provision of adequate security during rallies, processions and meetings.
The statement read:
“More so that the police had deliberately contravened Section 83 (4) of the Police Establishment Act 2020 which provides that “Where a person or organization notifies the police of his or its intention to hold a public meeting, rally or procession on a public highway or such meetings in a place where the public has access to, the police officer responsible for the area where the meeting rally or procession will take place shall mobilize personnel to provide security cover for the meeting, rally or the procession.
Since the Police admitted that protesters committed no offence whatsoever why were some of them arrested? Why were the so called hoodlums and miscreants who wanted to cause mayhem and unleash violence on the protesters not arrested? Or were they treated like sacred cows because they had been hired to disrupt the peaceful rallies of the protesters?
Why were the scanty pro-government protesters who were reported to have fought openly in Abuja over their booty not arrested for breach of the peace in the Federal Capital Territory?”