Some residents of Abuja have accused the federal capital territory (FCT) police command of frustrating their plan to protest the violence against women.
In a statement on Thursday, the group said twice, the police command rejected their letter for a proposed march against what they term violence against women in Abuja.
Some of the women arrested during raids conducted by the police in Abuja said they were raped by different officers.
This sparked protests and demonstration across Abuja. The police subsequently set up a probe panel.
Members of the Concerned Abuja Residents said they have also chosen to hit the streets for victims of police brutality but the police are trying to prevent them from achieving their aim.
“Concerned Abuja Residents, a collective of private citizens, representatives of human rights and civil society organisations are alarmed that their official notification to the FCT Police Command, informing them of the proposed march to the FCT Minister’s office, has been rejected twice,” the statement read.
“The march, intended to bring awareness to and seek an immediate end to the violence that women in Abuja face in the hands of members of the task force of the Abuja Environmental Protection Board and law enforcement agencies, is in enforcement of our human and constitutional rights to assemble.
“Representatives of the group hand delivered the letter and it was rejected at the registry on instructions of the Assistant Commissioner of Police. The letter was then sent through a courier agency, and it was rejected again, asking for a meeting with the conveners of the march before it would be acknowledged.
“We seek to remind the Police that the Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria empowers citizens to gather, and to assemble; there are several court judgements attesting to this.”
Despite the rejection, the group called on Abuja residents to demonstrate against impunity and molestation of women in Abuja and other parts of the country.
When contacted, Anjuguri Manzah, spokesman of the police command, said he was not in the best position to comment on the matter because was on a course.
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