Lynching, mob justice or jungle justice has been an occurrence in my part of the world. It involves killing or punishing law breakers in the most inhumane way possible. This is mostly carried out by angry mob or the vigilantee group of a community as a way of seeking justice against offenders. I believe that this type of justice system started before the colonial era and was called "Trial by Ordeal".
In most communities, people needs to prove their innocence for a crime or for witchcraft accusations by jumping into an artificial sinking mud built by the community. If they drown and die, they are proclaimed innocent. Some people were subjected to be tied up and flogged for a number of times that will be equivalent to their crime.
With development came a more orderly society and government where punishment of offenders are left for the law enforcement organ of the government. Offenders are taken in and when found guilty face the punishment proscribed by the law. Even though this is now the trend, there still remain a certain portion of the society that still embrace mob justice.
Mob justice constitutes extra judicial killing which the law of every nation frowns upon. It is inhuman, it is degrading and it infringes on an accused persons right to fair hearing and justice.
Rape is a sin, killing is a sin, stealing is a sin, armed robbery is also a sin but that doesn't give the public the right to mete out justice on these people. The police department was not established for jokes neither was the courtroom established for concerts. These bodies are there in order to help carry out justice and stop injustice in the most peacefully way.
It is true that most times, the guilty parties get away scot-free maybe because they must have played some dirty games, many people walk free from their crimes. But that doesn't vest in citizens the right to see that justice is done through such cruel mob action.
Most of the people who were subjected to jungle justice are innocent. Imagine if you are walking along a busy Street and there is chaos. Someone stole something and is on the run. All of a sudden, one of the angry mob grabs and accused you of being the thief and before you can say anything in self defense, the crowd comes at you and begin to throw stones. Let's say you are lucky and the police show up before you are sent to an early grave in the most disgusting way possible. Or that the police shows up after the mob had carried out their intentions on you. Either way, the thief walks free and an innocent person pays the price. Sometimes, the thief would be among the crowd throwing stuffs at you. The biggest punch you got may have even come from him.
There is absolutely nothing justifying about jungle justice. No one deserves to go through that. It doesn't matter if he has committed the highest crime of the century. Even when death sentences were still a popular justice method, the court never sentenced anyone to a death as cruel as jungle justice.
I believe that the best way to combat jungle justice and extrajudicial killings is through mass education. But since most people block off this knowledge or rather still engage in jungle justice even after orientations, the best option is for individuals to always reach out to the law enforcement agencies when they see such things about to be done. Do not look away with an "it is none of my business attitude". It might happen to you or someone you know tomorrow. You may not necessarily have committed a crime but once someone points an accusing finger at you, your defense becomes useless
Do you think that the best way to battle injustice and punish offender in a world where most of them walk free is justified? The comment is yours.
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