The Public Advice Centre promotes legal awareness and ensures access to the right information through the right channels thereby facilitating access to justice.
- PAC received a petition from a pregnant woman whose pregnancy was aborted due to the fact that she was kicked in the stomach by her Lebanese Manager. PAC referred the matter to the Office of the Public Defender (OPD). At a settlement meeting at PAC, between the Lebanese Manager, OPD and PAC the petitioner was given one Million Naira as compensation.
- A Youth Corp member brought a complaint to PAC on the 24th of July 2015 that she was physically assaulted by the gateman of the school where she was serving because she did not respond favourably to his amorous advances. She complained also, of the failure of the school to pay her the allowances due to her. She sustained injuries from the physical assault and had to treat same in the hospital. PAC intervened and the gateman paid her medical bills. PAC also facilitated the payment of the outstanding arrears of the allowances due to her by the school.
- PAC was in receipt of a petition from a journalist who alleged that he was assaulted by a group of thugs within the premises of the Nigerian Customs Services (NCS) Seme Border Command whereby he suffered grievous bodily harm especially in the eye region. A letter was sent from this office to the Controller General of Customs in Abuja who through PAC asked the journalist to visit the Seme Command but he opted to exercise his rights in court. The matter is currently in court.
PAC provides succour to the citizenry in distress who come for advice.
- A staff who retired from the Local Government Service in 2013, and whose pension benefits had not been paid to him two years after retirement. He visited PAC in March, 2015 and PAC wrote on his behalf to the Lagos State Pension Commission and he was invited by the LASPEC office. By August 2015 he received his bond certificate.
- A petitioner visited our office and alleged that his landlord failed to provide adequate toilet facility in his rented apartment. This inadequacy constituted Environmental pollution and health hazard to the tenants, the neighbourhood and a violation of section 22 of the Lagos State Environmental Protection Agency Law. The petitioner had spent money to rectify the situation but without success. PAC wrote to the Ministry of the Environment who instructed the landlord to effect the repair of the toilet and ensure that there is a good septic tank in the house for discharge of the sewage. This has now been done and the environmental pollution has ceased.
- A petitioner complained that he has been on the same salary scale and had not been promoted for over five years. PAC wrote to his employers and the anomaly was rectified. He is now on his proper level and receives his correct salary.
- A petitioner who was unable to access his fixed deposit funds in a finance company wrote a petition to PAC. PAC wrote to the regulatory body for financial institutions. The institution replied and promised to investigate the matter. The petitioner informed PAC that he had subsequently been paid his accrued investment.
PAC brings the government closer to the people thereby giving the citizens a sense of belonging and belief that they are benefiting from the dividends of good governance:
- PAC received complaints from the residents of Dopemu, Mangoro and Iyana Ipaja along the Agege Motor road who desire to cross to the opposite side of the road and are unable to do so with ease, because of the condition of the road. As a result of this many accidents had occurred and many people had lost their lives in the process. PAC made referrals to the Ministry of works and Infrastructure on their complaints. The effect of the complaints resulted in the building of a pedestrian bridge for the people living on that axis by the state Government for ease of movement and crossing the road.
- PAC was in receipt of a complaint from a resident who operates an NGO Initiative in Ikola Area in the State who requested for a public school and medical facility for her community. PAC wrote to the Ministries of Education, Youth and Social Welfare and Health for intervention in respect of the matter. The State Government has promised to establish schools, roads in the communities within that area Work is in progress on her request.
PAC provides stability amongst the citizenry and prevents conflicts amongst the communities and individuals who come for advice.
- PAC received a petition in respect of two communities; the Jagundeyi Apena Community Ayobo, Ipaja and the Kadoso village in Baruwa Area of Ipaja, Lagos who are in conflict over a piece of land which was leased for a period of time to the Jagundeyi Apena community by the Kadoso village. PAC was informed that the bone of contention was the fact that the Baale of the Kadoso village observed that the other community intended selling their leased land to individuals within the validity of their lease without the consent of the lessor. PAC intervened in the matter and the rights and the responsibilities of the disputing communities were defined and peace was restored amongst the communities.
CHILD RIGHTS AND SOCIAL WELFARE
PAC prevents children from living in conflict with the law and from being subjected to abuse; this is because they and their parents will be better informed of their rights and responsibilities.
- In January, 2016 a young boy of nine who ran away from home, through an NGO made a report against her guardian to PAC. The boy was physically abused, inflicted with grievous bodily injuries and his education was neglected by his guardian. PAC wrote to WAPA, the boy has been rescued from the guardian and the guardian invited to WAPA for interview
- A young girl of 11 years of age who was picked up in a lonely uncompleted building. She was physically abused by her father and she sustained severe injuries all over her body because she took sides with her mother on a disagreement between her parents. PAC referred the matter to the Ministry of Women Affairs and Poverty Alleviation took the girl to a secured place and invited the parents for counselling.
PAC AIDS POLICY FORMULATION
- Prior to the enactment of THE LAGOS STATE DISABILITY LAW, PAC received a complaint from a resident that the building of his workplace was not Disability friendly. During this period, PAC had a synergy with THE LAGOS CIVIL SOCIETY DISABILITY PARTNERSHIP (LCSDPP) who was then proposing the passing of the disability Law. PAC made some input into the bill which was eventually passed into law. The law amongst others provides for the building of a ramp at the entrance of each building whether public or private for use by the disabled.
This Provision of the law is now in force as can be seen at the entrance of each block at the Alausa Secretariat, Ikeja and other public and private buildings.
Finally, the Public Advice Centre is accessible to all and the services are free without payments.