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Possession of Pepper Spray An Offence- Nigerian Police

Possession of Pepper Spray An Offence- Nigerian Police

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Yomi Shogunle, Assistant Commissioner of Police and head of Public Complaint Rapid Response Unit (PCRRU), is in the news again. He used social platform, Twitter, to announce to the general public that pepper spray is an offence in Nigeria.

A Nigerian twitter user Dolapo (@DolapoPizzu) complained to Shogunle that she has been arrested for being in possession of pepper spray.

Shogunle, in turn, showed support to his colleagues by branding it an offensive weapon.

See the tweet below:

Going by The Criminal Code Act, chapter 36, subsection 403B, an offensive weapon is:

“offensive weapon” means any article apart from a firearm made or adapted for use for causing injury to the person or intend by the person having it for such use by him and it includes an air gun, air pistol, bow and arrow, spear, cutlass, matchet, dagger, cudgel, or any piece of wood, metal, glass or stone capable of being used as an offensive weapon.

His response has come as a surprise to many Nigerians especially women who believe that pepper spray is used as a defence weapon against potential rapists.

Although Nigerians have taken offence at the statement, Section 417 states

Any person who is found in any of the following circumstances- 

(a)being armed with any dangerous or offensive weapon or instrument, and being so armed with intent to break or enter a dwelling-house, and to commit a felony therein;

is guilty of a felony, and is liable to imprisonment for three years.

 If the offender has been previously convicted of a felony relating to property, he is liable to imprisonment for seven years.

In response to this announcement, some Nigerians have taken to their social platforms to react.

Read some of the comments below:

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