Perpetrators of assault on NPA’s MD must be investigated ―  Group

The reported assault on the Managing Director of the Nigerian Ports Authority (NPA), Ms Hadiza Usman, at the premises of the National Assembly, last week, has been described as a barbaric act which must not go unpunished.

President of Rights Monitoring Group and Centre for Convention on Democratic Integrity (RMG/CCDI), Olufemi Aduwo, said this in a statement issued on Sunday, as he called for an investigation into the incident.

Ms Usman had petitioned the Inspector General of Police, Senate President Ahmed Lawan and the Director General of the Department of State Security (DSS), alleging that she was harassed and humiliated on the premises of the National Assembly, last Tuesday.

Calling for an investigation into the alleged assault, she said she was at the National Assembly at the invitation of its Joint Committee on Navy, Marine Transport and Finance to attend a public hearing on the safe anchorage area of the Lagos Ports.

Aduwo, condemning the alleged harassment and humiliation of Ms Usman, urged the IGP to investigate and prosecute the perpetrators of the act, adding that if those behind the attack were left unpunished, it would send a wrong signal about the level of security in premises of the National Assembly.

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“Failure to investigate the incident would not only send a wrong signal that the premises of the National Assembly are a security threat to public officials and other citizens and even to the lawmakers too.

“It is unthinkable that criminals, allegedly sponsored by some individuals were allowed access to the National Assembly premises to intimidate and humiliate a government official of Ms Hadiza Usman level or anybody in such environment, is the height of lawlessness and disrespect to the National Assembly,” he said.

Aduwo, who is the Permanent Representative of CCDI to United the Nations, further said: “Ms Usman alleged that the action was perpetrated by people believed to be hirelings of a company which contract was recently terminated. That should be enough a clue for the police to work on and get these criminals arrested.

“The MD of the NPA must be commended for the level of development and transparency recorded so far within three years of her tenure and which has superseded the combined achievements of her predecessors and gender should not be an issue of consideration across all the sectors.”

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