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HURIWA seeks probe of ‘paedophiles’ in NASS as Ogun suspends commissioner for alleged sexual harassment

National Assembly Complex, Abuja, FCT

*The Ogun State Government of Nigeria has announced the suspension of the Commissioner for Environment, pending the conclusion of an independent investigation into the sexual harassment accusation against him

Emmanuel Akosile | ConsumerConnect

Following increasing cases of sexual harassment and paedophilia in the country in recent times, the Human Rights Writers Association of Nigeria (HURIWA) has condemned the move by some Federal lawmakers in the National Assembly (NASS) to amend the Electoral Act to allow for ‘married underage girls’ to vote in the country.

Emmanuel Onwubiko, National Coordinator, and Zainab Yusuf, National Media Affairs Director of HURIWA in a statement in Abuja, FCT, disclosed the group’s intention to write to the European Union (EU) and United Kingdom (UK), among others to probe some of the legislators for possible links to paedophilia.

ConsumerConnect reports paedophilia has been described as a “sexual desire felt by an adult for children, or the crime of sex with a child.”

The organisation said: “We are going to send powerful letters to member nations of the EU, as well as the UK, United States of America (USA), Australia, and Canada to call their attention to the possibility of a network of paedophiles in the National Assembly.

“We will be asking these developed societies to take steps to impose travel restrictions on these identified members of the National Assembly who may be running a network and gang of paedophiles.”

HURIWA expressed its disappointment that at a time other economies across the globe are using instrumentality of the law to advance women’s rights and stop gender-based violence (GBV), the NASS is busy drafting a pro-paedophilia bill to enable underage married girls to enjoy voting rights.

This amounts to legalising paedophilia, stated the group.

In the meantime, the Ogun State Government has suspended Mr. Abiodun Abudu-Balogun, Commissioner for Environment, for alleged sexual harassment.

Mr. Abiodun Abudu-Balogun, Commissioner for Environment in Ogun State

The Commissioner was suspended from office over an allegation of sexual harassment of a 16-year-old girl identified as Barakat Mayowa Melojuekun.

Though young Barakat stated her uncle reportedly took her to Abudu-Balogun’s residence to operate a computer, she claimed that the Commissioner lured her to his bedroom and attempted to rape, according to report.

Mr. Tokunbo Talabi, Secretary to the State Government (SSG), in a statement Sunday, January 3, 2021, in Abeokuta, Ogun State capital, then announced the suspension of the commissioner pending the conclusion of an independent investigation into the accusation.

Talabi stated that the state government decided to suspend Abudu-Balogun to enable him to cooperate fully with the independent investigation being carried out by the Police.

The statement noted: “Whilst taking cognisance of the principle of a suspect being presumed innocent until proven guilty and the public statement issued by Honourable Abudu-Balogun denying the allegation, as a government with zero tolerance for gender-based violence and indeed any criminality, the suspension is a further demonstration of the commitment of Dapo Abiodun administration to fairness, equity, justice and the rule of law, no matter who is involved.”

The SSG assured the residents in Ogun State that the stated government would do everything necessary to ensure that justice was served in the case.

The suspended Commissioner for Environment has been directed to hand over to the Permanent Secretary at the State Ministry of Environment.

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