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A Sex Worker in Nigeria Speaks Against Violence

An article in the Nation by Leke Salaudeen explores police corruption and brutality.

A Lagos sex worker, who simply identified herself as Helen, relived her experience with police. She said: “Most often, the police will come to our brothel in the night, march us into their waiting van. They will take us to either Third Mainland Bridge or the Bar Beach. They will beat and rape us. They sleep with us without protection.

“Sometimes, they will search us and steal our money and then drop us and run away. If you refuse to cooperate with them, they will get rid of you.

There was an incident when one of my colleagues was shot and thrown into the Lagoon for refusing to make love with a police officer on the Third Mainland Bridge.”

But a police officer in the Ikeja Police Station explained the officers’ penchant for commercial sex workers.

He said: “Raping of sex workers is one of the fringe benefits attached to night patrol. We use to lobby for night patrol duties.”


Human Rights and Law

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