A Nigerian court has made a landmark ruling in striking out a police regulation that prohibited unmarried female officers from getting pregnant.
It followed a suit by a sacked policewoman who challenged her dismissal on grounds of discrimination since her male counterparts are not dismissed in similar circumstances.
The regulation, which called for the dismissal of any unmarried officer who becomes pregnant, was deemed discriminatory and illegal by the judge.
The court found that the regulation unfairly applied to unmarried policewomen getting pregnant while in service but did not apply to unmarried male police officers impregnating females while they were in service.
“The court finds and holds that the provision [of the regulation], which applies to unmarried women police officers getting pregnant while in service but does not apply to unmarried male police officers impregnating females while they are in service, is discriminatory,” Justice Dashe Damulak ruled on Wednesday.
As a result, the court awarded the policewoman N5 million in compensation for the violation of her fundamental right to freedom from discrimination.
However, the court denied her request to be reinstated to the police service as she was on probation at the time of her dismissal.