Mockery of Justice as DSS re arrested sowore – SERAP

…textbook case of abuse to judicial process

The Socio-Economic Rights and Accountability Project has condemned the rearrest of pro-democracy campaigner and journalist, Omoyele Sowore, by operatives of Department of Security Service on Friday.

SERAP frowned against the harassment and intimidation of Justice Ijeoma Ojukwu of the Federal High Court, Abuja, by armed DSS operatives, who stormed the courtroom in a bid to rearrest the activist and forced her close proceedings abruptly.

In a statement on Friday, the group said the action of the DSS was shameful.

The statement said, “The violent rearrest of Sowore right inside the courtroom, is a textbook case of a mockery of justice and abuse of judicial process.

“It drives home the failure of the Nigerian Government to fulfill its constitutional and international human rights obligations to respect citizens’ human rights and observe the rule of law.”

SERAP Deputy Director, Kolawole Oluwadare, added that the invasion of the courtroom and the ill-treatment of Sowore was a blatant attack on the rule of law and the sanctity and integrity of Nigeria’s justice system.

The organisation called United Nations Human Rights Council, African Commission on Human and Peoples’ Rights and members of the international community to prevail on the Nigerian authorities to end violations and abuses of human rights and threats to the rule of law.

The statement added, “An independent judiciary free from intimidation and harassment is a basic precondition to a functioning democracy under the rule of law.

“If Nigerian authorities are serious about human rights and the rule of law, they should hold those responsible to account.

“Only then will Nigerians have full confidence in this government’s ability to protect their human rights, obey the rule of law and the independence of the judiciary.”