(Editorial News) Jungle Justice is Not The Way To Go


This is a must read for everybody. And it is an
Since the recent upsurge in the cases of kidnapping across the country, especially with the discovery of a ritualists’ den in Soka Forest in Ibadan, Oyo State, the public has come under renewed fears of kidnappers and ritualists. Public response to such, however, has become as chilling as the activities of the kidnappers, with a preference for instant punishement or jungle justice. Very recently in the Abule Egba area of Lagos, a middle-aged woman suspected to be a kidnapper was set ablaze after she had been stripped and tortured. Residents of the area were reported to have seen her forcing school children into a waiting Sports Utility Vehicle (SUV). This provoked suspicion that she was a kidnapper and led bystanders to raise an alarm, which invited a mob ready to lynch.

In the last one month, incidents like this have been reported in nearby Iyana Ipaja area of Lagos and in Ikire and Apomu towns, both in Osun State.

While there is no doubt that ritualists and kidnappers merit the sternest of penalties, they should get such through legal means, which consider evidence and circumstances in which the alleged crimes occur. Dispensing instant justice on the basis of uninvestigated allegation in unacceptable.

Kidnapping is hardly a new occurrence in the country, but its resurgence and the lack of faith in the system have convinced many that it need to be dealt with in a less than conventional way. The unconventional way still must abide by the law.

The injudicious killing of four undergraduates of the University of Port Harcourt, two years ago by a mob at Aluu for alleged armed robbery provides an indication of the weakness of jungle justice. It was later proved that the unlucky undergraduates were innocent of the alleged crime and were killed because the person owing them some amount of money just did not want to pay up.

Turning an innocent man into a victim of jungle justice is ridiculously simple. All it takes is a false alarm of a crime and a mob is ready to kill.

This cannot and should not continue. However much we loath kidnappers and ritualists, we must endeavor to take them through a legal process that will determine their guilt or otherwise.

Clearly, Nigerians have grown tired of law enforcement agents conniving with suspected criminals to escape from custody or being freed at the court on technical grounds.

Even then, these hardly provide a basis for jungle justice. A continuation of this practice will ensure that one insane behavior is being replaced with another.

Restraint is needed so we do not become an ailment in the process of looking for a cure.

http://globalvillageextra.com reports


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