Nigeria: Angst over students ‘tied to cross and whipped’ as punishment
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Rage has spread over inhuman corporal punishment for students in an Ogun State school, in South-West Nigeria where students were tied to stake, like cross, and flogged with horsewhip for being late to school.
Three persons- including the headteacher – were taken into custody after a police officer stumbled across the incident.
Recently a photo went viral of a rigorous whipping of students in another secondary school in Nasarawa State, North-Central Nigeria.
A Facebook user questioned why children, both Christians and Muslims, should be tied to a cross and punished.
Pictures show at least two young people – one boy and one girl – tied to a makeshift crucifix with green string.
A police spokesman described the punishment as “a barbaric act”.
Local reports say they were being punished for being late.
The officer – named only as Livinus – tried to intervene, asking the school’s owner to free the teenagers. When the owner of the school in Ayetoro, 145km (90 miles) north-west of Lagos, refused, the officer decided to take action – only to be forced back.
“When I tried to untie the pupils, the proprietor and his teachers beat me up,” he told Nigerian newspaper Punch. “Before I returned from picking handcuffs from my car, they had grabbed a friend who was with me… and beaten him up with a horsewhip.”
The suspects were eventually arrested after back-up arrived.
Ogun State police spokesman Abimbola Oyeyemi confirmed to the BBC the principal, owner and another teacher were arrested and are likely to be charged.
He added: “The act is no longer a corrective measure, it is a barbaric act, it is not acceptable and it will not be tolerated.”