Samuel Okolie: The illegality of police involvement in civil dispute: a serious reason for
There is a rising construction in Nigeria, where of us cling the police in every more or much less dispute, with out conception that there is a colossal chasm and incompatibility between civil conditions and disputes that are criminal in nature. Some Nigerians along with some police officers most continuously turn most civil issues into criminals subject.
These situation of Nigerians, owing to their living in society, monetary powers, and their relationship (connection) with some police officers most continuously exhaust undue income of these privileges they cling got to intimidate, harass, and threaten their fellow citizen by turning issues that are purely civil in nature to criminal issues. They attain this by reporting conditions that are purely civil in nature to the police, and the police will out of palpable lack of recordsdata and along with this privileged Nigerians arrest, detain and in some conditions, prosecute the unhappy innocent citizen in a subject that’s de facto civil in nature.
A prototypical example of such conditions will be adumbrated right here: as an instance, Mr. A takes a loan from Mr. B, with an settlement to pay help the loan inner two month, nevertheless owing to inexplicable conditions, Mr. A is unable to pay help the loan throughout the agreed date, Mr. B, will then reports the subject to the police, and the police will prepare a case file of both stealing, acquiring by unfounded pretence, or any other offence in opposition to Mr. A, whereas the subject is only a civil motion that does no longer require the involvement of police. Somewhat a number of these scenarios abound on an everyday basis in our society, and neither the police authority nor the civil liberty organization is doing mighty about it.
The court in plethora of conditions cling warned in opposition to this more or much less actions, in Nzegbuna and Okoye (2018) ECAR437, the court held that refusal or failure to pay help a loan/debt even although a imperfect in its salvage staunch, can handiest be redressed by resort to civil motion and no longer the involvement of the police, as the invitation of the police in a subject that’s purely civil in nature can’t be justified or popular below any circumstance.
One more example of police involvement in civil motion can furthermore be illustrated in tenancy issues where as an instance, a tenant who’s owing arrears of rent for approximately two years or more is reported to the police by a recalcitrant and impatient landlord, the police can help in ejecting the tenant from his premises, or where a landlord with aid from some police officer denies some tenant of their rights, like utilization of basic utilities like electrical energy and water due to the the tenant incapability to pay.
It is a long way submitted that the tasks of police, as succinctly and lucidly equipped for in Share 4 of Police Act, CAP 359 Regulations of the Federation of Nigeria, is for the prevention and detection of crime and does no longer encompass the settlement of civil dispute or the sequence of debt or enforcement of civil settlement between parties.
Samuel Okolie is a Lagos-based totally moral practitioner, firstname.lastname@example.org, 08066756987