Law News
NHRC summons Enugu waste management boss over rights abuses

The National Human Rights Commission has summoned the Managing Director, Enugu State Waste Management Authority, Mr. Dominic Okonkwo, to appear before it on January 28 with respect to allegations of human rights abuses made against him and his agency.

A statement by the Chief Press Officer of the NHRC, Fatimah Mohammed, said the summons was the second issued by the commission inviting Okonkwo and officials of the agency who were alleged to have orchestrated widespread human rights abuses in the exercise of their duties.

The statement by the commission quoted the Executive Secretary of NHRC, Prof. Bem Angwe, to have warned Okonkwo to heed the invitation to appear before it or face the full wrath of the law.

The commission reminded the Managing Director of ESWAMA that “it is an offence under Section 6(4) (4) of the National Human Rights Commission Act of 1995, as amended for any person, body or authority to refuse to comply with the commission’s lawful directives.”

The statement added that such a person would be “liable on conviction to imprisonment for a term of six months or to a fine of N100,000.00 or to both such imprisonment and fine.”

In particular, the ESWAMA officials were alleged to have assaulted Messrs Mohammed Koma and Haruna Koma, private security guards in Enugu State causing bodily harms to them.

On October 29, 2015 the United Nations System’s Operational Activities for Development in Nigeria referred a petition to the commission at the instance of The Civil Rights Realisation and Advancement Network.

In the petition, officials of the agency on October 23, 2015 while on a revenue drive were said to have brutally assaulted two security men — Messrs Mohammed Koma and Haruna Koma — at No. 23 Mbaukwu Street, Independence Layout, Enugu State.

The statement said, “The officials of ESWAMA were alleged to have beaten up the two security men and used shovel and heavy iron rods on them for failing to present evidence of payment of sanitation fees by their employer.”

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