Senator Elisha Abbo, who is currently the youngest Senator in Nigeria, was at an adult shop when the incident occurred. The senator assaulted the woman in the presence of a policeman, who then arrested her.
The assault on the woman, who has yet to be identified, was caught on camera and published on Twitter by the newspaper Premium Times Nigeria. The video immediately went viral, with Nigerians demanding that both the Senator and the policeman be arrested.
There is a plan under way to submit a petition against the Senator to the Inspector General of Police. Another petition will be submitted to the leadership of the Senate. According to Amnesty International Nigeria, the woman was slapped three times and was treated for injuries at a hospital.
The Inspector General of Police, IGP M.A Adamu, NPM,mni has ordered a comprehensive investigation into the circumstances surrounding the alleged assault on a female Nigerian by Senator Abbo Elisha.
— Nigeria Police Force (@PoliceNG) July 3, 2019
The People’s Democratic Party (PDP), of which the Senator is a member, has made no statement regarding the case. It is not known at this stage if any internal disciplinary action will be taken. However, the Nigerian Senate has set up a panel to probe Senator Elisha. And the Inspector General of Police, IGP Adamu has ordered a comprehensive investigation into the assault.
This incident comes just a week after Busola Dakolo spoke out about her experience of being raped by Biodun Fatoyinbo, senior pastor of the Commonwealth of Zion Assembly (COZA). Her story led to protests at the various branches of COZA, both in Abuja and Lagos. Biodun later stepped down as a pastor of COZA. However, people are demanding that the pastor be prosecuted.
The oppression of Nigerian women has been going on for a very long time, but recently there has been a pushback. The Market March, which led to protests against sexual harassment in market areas, was a success. A greater consciousness of the problems and discrimination that women face is being created and social media is playing a crucial role in seeing that justice is done.
— Farouq Goni (@omargonee) July 2, 2019