– Nigerian security forces have been accused of collecting N44 billion from Nigerians to enforce COVID-19 lockdown
– The accusation was made by a civil rights group, International Society for Civil Liberties and Rule of Law
– The group said their investigation covered lands and borders and was from March 30 to June 30
A civil rights group, the International Society for Civil Liberties and Rule of Law (Intersociety), has alleged that Nigerian security forces criminally collected monies estimated at not less than N44 billion from Monday, March 30 to Tuesday, June 30 while enforcing the COVID-19 lockdown.
The report which was released by Intersociety on Sunday, June 28, was signed by the group’s board chair, Emeka Umeagbalasi and other senior officers of the organisation.
The group said their investigation covered lands and borders and did not include railways, coastal lines, waterways and airports.
According to them, those pocketing the bribes include officers and personnel of the Nigerian Army, Nigeria Police Force, Federal Road Safety Corps, Nigerian Security and Civil Defense Corps and Nigeria Customs Service.
Officers and personnel of the Nigerian Air Force and Nigerian Navy were also indicted.
Intersociety called for the scrapping of the inter-state lockdowns adding that they have become counterproductive and conduit pipe for bribery and corruption.
“Nigerian government must also end the long-suffering of the Nigerian road users owing to the counterproductive and corruption-prone interstate lockdowns and device better and result-oriented ways of preventing and managing the COVID-19 pandemic,” Intersociety said.
Meanwhile, 24 hours after Intersociety’s report, the federal government on Monday, June 29, lifted the ban on interstate movement effective from Wednesday, July 1.
The Secretary to the Government of the Federation (SGF) and chairman Presidential Task Force (PTF) on COVID-19, Boss Mustapha, disclosed this on Monday, June 29, during the daily media briefing in Abuja.
The PTF, however, reaffirmed the continuation of the nationwide curfew between 10 pm and 4 am adding that “travels are not expected at this period.”
Mustapha also said the government has approved the safe resumption of domestic flights in the country.
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