Human Rights Writers Association of Nigeria, HURIWA, has carpeted the Lagos State Police command and the Inspector-General of Police, IGP, Usman Alkali Baba, for assigning five operatives of the Force to protect a musician, Burna Boy.
The rights group said this sort of deployment which is absolutely irregular, has become the norm in the police force of Nigeria.
The rights group said that explains why there is absence of preemptive actions in times of critical needs because the few operatives are all sent for private commercial jobs by their Area Commanders and Commissioners and probably by approval of the Inspector-General.
HURIWA said this following a recent incident at a Lagos nightclub, where Burna Boy’s police escorts shot at a man after the musician allegedly made passes at the man’s wife.
The Lagos State Police Commissioner’s Special Squad has since detained the five policemen attached to the singer for attempted murder.
One of the policemen was said to have shot at two fun seekers— Irebami Lawrence and another identified simply as Tolu, at Club Cubana on Victoria Island, Lagos, on Wednesday.
According to a preliminary report by the Bar Beach Police Division, the trouble started when Burna Boy and his five police escorts entered the nightclub around 4:00am on June 8.
While about four policemen waited outside, one of them, identified as Inspector Ibrahim, who was in mufti, accompanied the Grammy-Award-winning artiste into the club.
The singer was in the VIP section with three women when he allegedly spotted another woman.
However, the lady’s husband was said to have lambasted the singer, insisting that it was disrespectful for any man to make advances at his wife.
After some minutes, Burna Boy reportedly made fresh advances at the woman. This infuriated her husband further and his friends who had gathered at the club.
“As things were getting heated, Ibrahim brought out his service pistol and shot multiple times while Burna Boy was laughing,” said a senior policeman.
HURIWA quoted a media report as stating that in the process, 27-year-old Lawrence was shot in the thigh, while his friend, Tolu, was hit in the head by a bullet and this caused a commotion in the club.
It was learnt that Burna Boy and his crew then drove off to one of his properties at the Elegushi end of the Lekki-Epe Expressway before leaving for Lekki Phase 1.
Aware of what he had done, Burna Boy took the next flight out without even informing the policemen. He only made a video call to them to inform them that he had travelled to Spain.
HURIWA apportioned a greater blame to the Inspector-General of Police, Usman Alkali Baba, accusing him of allowing five whole policemen to embark on such an illegal duty.
The group called on President Muhammadu Buhari to unbundle the Police Service Commission, PSC, and sack the Chairman of the Police Service Commission, adding that the Chairman has displayed gross incompetence and unwillingness to provide leadership to the commission.
It also called on the Lagos State Attorney-General and Commissioner for Justice to bring the musician, Burna Boy and his killer police squad to justice to demonstrate that in a democracy no one is above the law.