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Lockdown over COVID-19: Operate within the ambit of rule of law — group tells law enforcement agencies

The Nigeria chapter of the International Society of Public Law (ICON-S NG) has called on all the government law enforcement agencies saddled with the responsibilities of enforcing the government’s directives in the fight against the COVID-19 pandemic to exercise their powers within the stipulated laws of engagement.

The call, credited to the country chair of the group (ICON-S NG) domiciled in the University of Ilorin, Professor Wahab Egbewola SAN, was made on Monday in a press release of the group.

“The chapter calls on the governments at all levels as well as the security agencies enforcing the various measures to ensure that it operates with the ambit of the rule of law and that all agents of state also comply with lay down International laws in enforcing all government policies.

“It is our view that the respect for human dignity is one that must be respected in this trying moment. The Nigerian Police, military and other paramilitary agencies must ensure that they adhere to the basic tenets of human dignity and respect for bodily integrity of all individuals in all circumstances.

“In line with International standards, all reasonable and civil methods must be deployed as against cruel and brutal approaches as we observe in other countries.

“ICON-S Nigeria, therefore calls on relevant authorities to ensure that the rules of engagement are clearly spelt out for officers in the field while the citizens are urged to comply and complement the well meaning efforts of the government to contain the spread of the pandemic,” the statement read.

In the same vein, the group has announced an indefinite suspension of its international conference, scheduled to hold from April 27-29, 2020, saying the new date for the conference will be determined as the situation dictates and in line with guidelines from the relevant government authorities.

“In line with the various guidelines already issued, the chapter postponed the international conference scheduled to hold from April 27-29, 2020. The chapter shall continue to observe the situation in line with the guidelines from the relevant government authorities and would announce new dates for the conference accordingly,” ICON-S Nigeria announced in the release.

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