Veteran Nollywood actor cum Labour Party (LP) chieftain, Kenneth Okonkwo, has slammed the Lagos State Police over the treatment meted at Nigerian Afrobeat singer, Seun Kuti.
Naija News reported that the police, while confirming the arrest of the singer, shared photos and videos of Kuti handcuffed and his shoes removed.
Amidst the reactions that trailed the development, an inquisitive Twitter user berated the police over the action.
Responding, the Nigerian Police Public Relations Officer, Olumuyiwa Adejobi said it was a normal procedure before the detention of an individual.
However, Kenneth Okonkwo, in a post shared on social media, said it was unlawful for the police to handcuff the singer after he voluntarily surrendered himself.
According to him, a person who voluntarily submitted to the police cannot be presumed to be violent or planning to escape and Nigeria must learn to maintain the rule of law, irrespective of the person involved.
He said, “As a spokesperson for a movement seeking the entrenchment of the rule of law, I must admit that unlawful violence against any Nigeria citizen should not be condoned, especially when the person is a law enforcement agent.
“However, it’s unlawful for the police to handcuff Seun Kuti after he voluntarily surrendered to the police. Section 5(a) of the Administration of Criminal Justice Act 2015 states, “A suspect or defendant may not be handcuffed, bound or be subjected to restraint except there is reasonable apprehension of violence or an attempt to escape”.
“A person who voluntarily submitted to the police can not be presumed to be violent or planning to escape. We must learn in this country to maintain the rule of law no matter who is involved”
Recall that Kuti was over the weekend, involved in an altercation with a police officer on the Third Mainland bridge in Lagos and slapped the officer during the encounter.
Following the encounter, the Inspector-General of Police, Usman Alkali Baba ordered the arrest of the singer for investigation.
On Monday, the Lagos Police PRO, Ben Hundeyin confirmed the arrest of Kuti after he turned up at the Lagos State Police Command Headquarters, Ikeja, in the company of his lawyer and family representative.