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Jungle justice is bestiality

08 May 2014, 08:05 Abdulazeez Adelaja Akinlolu

Human beings are special creatures of God provided with the highest faculty of reasoning compared to all other creatures. Man is gracefully blessed and exalted. Man has conquered the world in all ramifications especially with the aid of several break-through scientific endeavours. Humans have, therefore, brought orderliness, stability and prosperity to their communities through organized socio-political leaderships. Written and unwritten constitutions have been used to sustain organized states. In the absence of constitutionalism and adherence to the rule of law, anarchy looms. It is pertinent to impress it on our societal conscience that jungle justice is an act of bestiality. It reduces man to the levels of animals with lowest reasoning faculties.

Of recent, there have been several cases of suspected kidnappers, ritualists and ’fake madmen’ being beaten to pulp and burnt alive. Such cases have been reported in different states across the country especially the South West following the discovery of the infamous Soka forest in Ibadan, Oyo State. Some have defended such acts of bestiality on the basis that previously reported cases were not resolved judiciously and that suspects were usually seen walking free on the streets after being caught and handed over to policemen. Some believe that suspects are usually well connected and that justice will always be denied.

Despite the noted apprehensions about our justice system we must never resort to jungle justice. We must not allow anarchy to prevail in the polity. We must continue to clamour for a justice system that works. We must form advocacy groups in our local communities of individuals with impeccable characters that we can trust to act on our behalf. Such pressure groups must always liaise with social activists and relevant government agencies to help our cause. Such pressure groups will hand over the ‘suspects’ to security agencies on our behalf; and will also follow up the cases to logical conclusions.

We must also give our security agencies the benefit of doubt and allow them to do their jobs.  There are security officers who are non-corruptible and will discharge their duties accordingly. Not only that, we have to understand that our security agents are sometimes handicapped by the deficiencies in our constitutional provisions.  Most of these offences such as suspected kidnapping, ritual killings and related are bail-able offences. Furthermore, some of our constitutional provisions are now obsolete and are unable to take care of new realities. This explains why some suspects are seen walking free on streets after being caught and handed over to the police. We must, therefore, not only form local advocacy groups but insist on constitutional reforms to address new civil and criminal challenges. We must demand that the National Assembly carries out constitutional reforms to resolve new challenges of terrorism, kidnapping, ritual killings, raping of women and others.

Any suspected ‘criminal’ must always be allowed to prove his or innocence.  Jungle justice gives no room for clear identification of wrongly or truly suspected criminals.  Let us reflect deeply over the fate of wrongly killed suspects. Many have been wrongly accused by those who have previous disagreements with them or based on other ulterior motives. Again when we kill ‘suspected’ criminals, we close sometimes completely the opportunity of conclusive investigations. Let us assume we have actually caught a real suspect. When we kill the suspect and have his or her house burnt down; we close the opportunity of going after his or her accomplices by killing the suspect. We have only arrested one of the possible criminals of a syndicate group. The ring leaders are then let loose to find new accomplices. Sometimes, the modus operandi is changed. The criminality continues. We must also think proactively that the killings of suspects might have been instigated by the major sponsors who never wanted to be caught or linked to such criminality. Probably, such criminalities have persisted because we have never allowed conclusive investigations of such cases. Let us allow the security agents to have access to available evidences (suspects, houses, hide-outs, syndicates e.t.c.) and conduct conclusive investigations. Let us be human. Let us be wise!

Lest we forget, the ALUU killings of our four undergraduates were possible only because we are permissive of lawlessness and jungle justice. The Ejigbo killing and sexual molestation of our women happened because we permitted jungle justice. You need to watch the videos of these cases and see clearly that there are beasts who appear in human clothing. It is unbelievable that such devils live amongst us. We have had enough of jungle justice. Let us stop the killings now. Let us allow constitutionalism to prevail over anarchy. Let us be human and stop acts of bestiality. Say no to jungle justice today!

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