Nigeria road safety commander cut hair of female employees

  • Published
Man in maroon beret cuts a woman's hair in publicImage source, FRSC Rivers State/Facebook
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An aide to President Buhari said the haircuts were "a humiliation of women"

Nigeria's road safety organisation has disciplined a senior commander after he was filmed punishing female employees by cutting off their long hair.

Photos showing the male commander taking a pair of scissors to the women's hair at an inspection parade sparked outrage online.

There are rules governing the hairstyles of female staff at the Federal Road Safety Corp (FRSC).

But a spokesman said the officer's action was "outside" the FRSC mandate.

Lauretta Onochie, an aide to Nigerian President Muhammadu Buhari, condemned the haircuts as a "humiliation of women" in a post on Twitter.

Andrew Kumapayi, regional commander for the FRSC in the southern Rivers State, reportedly carried out the punishment at an early-morning parade in the city of Port Harcourt on Monday.

He has not given any comment.

An official guide for female staff at FRSC parades says they must "maintain a hairstyle that can be tucked into their beret", but does not mention a ban on long hair.

Image source, FRSC Rivers State/Facebook
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Mr Kumapayi cut off the women's braids and weaves in front of colleagues
Image source, FRSC Rivers State Facebook page
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He has been recalled after an outcry over the pictures

A Facebook post containing photos of the incident has now been deleted from the organisation's official page, though the pictures have been shared thousands of times on social media.

The post said that Mr Kumapayi was carrying out a "hair, uniform and fingernails inspection" of staff.

Image source, FRSC Rivers State/FB
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The original Facebook post has now been removed

Other officers involved in the incident had also been recalled, FRSC spokesman Bisi Kazeem told the state-run News Agency of Nigeria.

An investigation was under way and "appropriate sanctions" would be taken against those involved, he added.

Image source, FRSC Rivers State/FB
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Photos shared online show clumps of hair on the floor at the parade