The Coalition of Public Interest Lawyers and Advocates (COPA) has urged the police to commence investigation on the rape allegation against Pastor Biodun Fatoyinbo by Mrs Busola Dakolo, wife of Timi Dakolo.
The cleric is the founder and Senior Pastror, Commonwealth of Zion Assembly (COZA).
On Sunday, Pelumi Olajengbesi, Chairman of COPA, in a statement described the allegation as grievous and that 24 lawyers were ready to file a case.
“In our quest to build a sane nation, no stone should be left unturned; this matter must be treated with the urgency it deserves and not swept under the carpet, as has regrettably been the habit”, he said.
“With the provisions of sections 4 and 24 of the Police Act, the Nigerian Police Force must urgently invite Pastor Biodun Fatoyinbo to appear before it to rest all sundry matters related to this matter. This is our demand.
“Regardless, the police must begin a thorough independent investigation of the allegations against Pastor Fatoyinbo, given that rape is a criminal matter that is squarely within their purview and mandate as a law enforcement agency.
“The Nigerian Police are to whereupon make its findings public and proceed to prosecute the culprit without delay, where its investigations turn up sufficient material for a case of rape,” he added.
Olajengbesi added that no fewer than 24 public interests lawyers and advocates have volunteered to take up the case.
“We are mindful that such an allegation had in the past been levelled against the same individual by a plethora of women claiming to have had the misfortune of coming in contact with him.
“Any reasonable individual must deduce that there is in fact a dire concern to be put to rest here by laying the whole truth bare through proactive action.
“The failure of Pastor Biodun Fatoyimbo, now and in the past, to address these allegations and clear the air on his innocence is not just an arrogant disregard of public sensitivity but a dare to the general public, perhaps, to ‘do its worse’.
“The issue of rape and sexual abuse is a contextual one with a great significance in our laws and culture.
“It is not just a ruthless crime but a moral impropriety that must be addressed post-haste for the culprit to face justice so the victim might find succor and respite in the sanction of the law.”