Home Community Insights Seun Kuti; Assaulting a Police Officer is a Felony

Seun Kuti; Assaulting a Police Officer is a Felony

Seun Kuti; Assaulting a Police Officer is a Felony

We all must have seen the video of Seun Kuti, a renowned Nigerian singer assaulting; slapping, pushing and aggressively malhandling a police officer in uniform which has been trending all day. In his defense, Seun Kuti claims that the police officer tried to “kill him” and his family members and that’s why he pounced on the officer in aggression to retaliate and defend himself. He (Seun Kuti) further stated that he has evidence to back up his claim of being assaulted first by the officer and he only decided not to press charges against the police officer because the police officer and his colleagues had apologized to him.

Contrary to this position of Seun, in the video circulating, the police officer was never seen to have retaliated or to even have lifted a finger on Seun to defend himself despite the aggravated assault Seun melted on him.

Well, let’s assume that Seun Kuti’s claim that the police officer tried to kill him is true, hence why he pounced on the officer; on no account should you attack an officer of law no matter whatsoever they did to you, especially the ones on uniform who can easily be identified as police officers on duty. It is a no go area. Assault on police officers is a felony punishable with at least 6 months jail term. Even resisting arrest or obstructing a police officer from doing his duty is as well an offense punishable by law.

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Section 98 of the Nigerian Police Act of 2020 provides as follows;

“A person who assaults, obstructs or resists a police officer in the discharge of his duty, or aids or incites any other person to assault, obstruct or resist a police officer or other person aiding or assisting the police officer in the discharge of his duty, commits an offence and is liable on conviction”.

I can understand fully well and can as well fully relate that Nigerian police officers can be very reckless and abusive to innocent citizens but that should never warrant a citizen to revolt and assault a police officer publicly or privately just like we saw Seun Kuti doing. There are avenues that have been established to address personal grievances against police officers and the Inspector General of Police and the Police Service Commission in recent time have done so well in making sure that excesses of reckless police officers are put to check. We have recently seen numerous police officers who were caught extorting, assaulting and harassing people severely punished by the police authorities; some were suspended, others were demoted and some were outrightly dismissed.

I look forward to Seun Kuti being arrested and prosecuted so that others will not want to repeat what he did which will lead to constant assaults and physical attacks on our formidable police officers who have been risking their lives to protect us.

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