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It is reported that the Inspector-General of Police (I-G), Ibrahim Idris, said that suspects, which includes two policemen, three army personnel, one prison official, one Air Force personnel, a staff of Borno Ministry for Agriculture and two members of the Civilian JTF have been arrested for sexually abusing women and girls displaced by the Boko Haram insurgency.

During the Inspector-General of Police Conference in Abuja on Tuesday, Mr Idris promised that the police would liaise with the Army and Air Force to make their personnel available for a thorough investigation of the suspects.

Mr. Idris said after the investigation, any suspects found guilty of the offence would be dismissed and taken to court for prosecution.

“We are going to conduct a thorough investigation and if anyone is found guilty we will dismiss him then take him to court,” he said.

He further stated that the police had put in place some mechanisms, including the deployment of female police officers to IDPs camp, to check future occurrences.

President Muhammadu Buhari had earlier in October ordered a thorough investigate into the allegation in a report published in Human Rights Watch, in October, which detailed how government officials abused and raped women living at IDP camps in Borno State. He charged the I-G and the affected state governors to immediately launch an investigation into the matter. As reported, the police had set up a special panel to investigate the alleged abuses which resulted in the arrest of the said officials.

The said report had documented sexual abuse, including rape and exploitation, of 43 women and girls living in seven internally displaced persons (IDP) camps in Maiduguri, the Borno State capital.

Human Rights Watch claimed that four of the victims told them that they were drugged and raped, while 37 were coerced into sex through false marriage promises and material and financial assistance.

Written by Okolo Ezinne

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