Report says raid of Nite Clubs in Abuja was authorized by a government official
7 months after, Nigerians seek justice for Abuja club raid victims.
As reported on Newswire, the women were raped, kidnapped, assaulted, and unlawfully detained.
David Hundeyin of the medium compiled the ordeal of the six victims in the hands of Abuja Environmental Protection Board (AEPB).
One of the victims, Cynthia had gone out with her friends to a club called ‘Cloud 9’ at the Nadrem Emporium on 3rd Avenue, Gwarimpa area of Abuja, when they were arrested.
Revealing how Cynthia and her friends were abducted, Newswire reports that "Suddenly the party was broken up by a large group of men who barged in, demanding that Cynthia and her friends stand up and follow them outside immediately. When they naturally resisted this unwanted intrusion on their evening outing, they were dragged outside along with the other women in the club. Outside they saw a convoy of law enforcement and armed forces vehicles including police, NSCDC, army, immigration and even the prisons service."
Cynthia, according to the report, spent four days in the hands of the police at the behest of the AEPB, where she alongside over 70 women were tear gassed in a locked police cell, denied food, water or sanitary provisions and raped by police officers.
Another victim of the raid, Mercy was reported to be standing at the roadside waiting for a “keke” while Peace, also a victim, was at a hotel for a friend’s birthday when they were arrested.
Newswire reports that none of the aforementioned women was doing anything particularly out of the ordinary, much less wrong when they were arrested.
The report added, "Mercy was accosted while waiting for a keke and abducted by a group of touts working for the AEPB. From going about her normal business, she found herself in police detention facing verbal and physical violence for no reason at all in the space of a few minutes. Even worse, as she said to my mounting amazement, she has been abducted under similar circumstances three times this year alone. For added incredulity, she revealed that on one such occasion, she was taken to the FCT High Court at Zuba and instructed to plead guilty to whatever she was charged with, lest she risk going to Suleja prison."
Mercy was subsequently charged with causing nuisance. On the other hand, Peace who is a regular middle-class professional working a 9-5 job, was lodged in her hotel room celebrating a friend’s birthday when she decided to buy water from the reception.
Peace said nobody answered the intercom, so she stepped out of her room to go downstairs herself. According to her, she did not even lock the door.
"Immediately I got to the reception, one woman came and held my hands and insisted that I should follow her and I was like “Ma, what happened?” She then said I should just respect myself and follow her, she continued dragging me until when we got outside, I saw cameras and a large crowd with people videoing with their phones, I saw so many hilux [sic] with police, immigration civil defence, military, etc.
"They were just so many along with touts in reflective jackets. I saw other girls being dragged into the buses. They even went to the extent of knocking the hotel rooms, they will knock the hotel doors and if you open the door and you happen to be a lady, they will drag you out of the rooms into the buses, it got to one girl, they did not only drag her out of the hotel room, they dragged her and pulled off her clothes before the cameras and took a naked picture of her, they took her clothes off and she was naked and took pictures of her," Peace was quoted as saying.
Hajiya Safiya Umar, the Acting Secretary to the FCT Social Development Secretariat (SDS), is at the center of this controversy as she was accused of influencing a significant part of the raid.
Despite criticizing Senator Elisha Abbo for assaulting a woman in July this year, Umar was accused of directly and openly coordinating "one of the worst human rights violations in the history of Nigerian democracy."
On her orders, according to Newswire, hundreds of women including nursing mothers were raped, assaulted, kidnapped and unlawfully detained in filthy conditions.
The ordeal of the victims attracted wild reactions among social media users who are pressing for justice.
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