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Consolidate on predecessors’ efforts, HURIWA tells new service chiefs

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Buhari meets with newly appointed Service Chiefs; Chief of Naval Staff, Rear Admiral A. Z Gambo (left); Chief of Defence Staff, Major-General LEO Irabor; President Muhammadu Buhari; Chief of Army Staff, Major-General, I. Attahiru and Chief of Air Staff, Air-Vice Marshal I.O Amao at the State House, Abuja.

•Says Dismissal Of Pregnant Unmarried Police Operative Unconstitutional 
The Human Rights Writers Association of Nigeria (HURIWA) has tasked the newly appointed heads of the Nigeria Armed Forces to consolidate on the structures erected by their predecessors to mainstream promotion and protection of human rights.

In a statement, yesterday, its National Coordinator, Emmanuel Onwubiko, and National Media Affairs Director, Zainab Yusuf, HURIWA praised the immediate past Army Chief, Lt. Gen. Tukur Buratai for setting up human rights department, where he posted a full fledge military general to take charge of continuous dialogues with credible leaders of the human rights community.

HURIWA said the department of civil-military relations deepened national conversations on how best to professionalise the Army and ensure compliance to global best practices, urging the new service chiefs to expand and upgrade the internal mechanisms for constructive dialogues between the military and civilians.

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Similarly, the newly appointed service chiefs have been charged to be proactive and apply professionalism, if they must succeed in the fight against insecurity and insurgency. The General Overseer of Christ the Life Bible International Church, Ezuo Okenna said this at the conferment of chieftaincy title on former Rivers Governor, Celestine Omehia, by the Ikwerre Council of Government Recognised Traditional Rulers.

Meanwhile, HURIWA has carpeted the National Assembly for failing to expunge section 127 of the Police Act, which discriminates against women in the area of relationship with opposite sex.

HURIWA wondered why single ladies in police are by the provision of extant legislation not allowed to become pregnant, whereas policemen who are single, but who impregnate girls were never sanctioned with outright dismissal.

Reacting to the sacking of a female Police Corporal, Olajide Omolola in Ekiti Command for getting pregnant while being unmarried, the Rights group argued that it was shocking that in 21st century, Nigerian lawmakers, who are maintained at exorbitant costs, cannot successfully amend the Police Act to be in compliance with global best practices.

It explained that section 127 says any police officer, who is unmarried and eventually gets pregnant, shall be disengaged from the Force, expressing shock that the discriminatory provision was left intact by the National Assembly when they frittered millions of naira to amend the police act and regulation.

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