Seun Kuti: Nigerian Afrobeat musician arrested over ‘police assault’


Nigerian Afrobeat musician Seun Kuti has been arrested for allegedly assaulting a police officer.

Lagos police spokesman Benjamin Hundeyin tweeted that Kuti had handed himself in on Monday, along with a photo of the musician in handcuffs.

Police chief Usman Alkali Baba had ordered his detention on Saturday.

Kuti, 40, was “captured on video assaulting a police officer in uniform”, the police spokesman added.

Kuti – the son of Afrobeat pioneer Fela Kuti – went to the police headquarters on Monday with his lawyer and family representative, Hundeyin added.

Before his arrest, Kuti said on Twitter that the policeman had tried to kill him and his family, but he did not explain how.

He and his lawyer have not commented since his arrest.

Videos posted online on Saturday showed the two men in the middle of a busy Lagos road.

It is not clear what caused the altercation but an agitated Kuti could be seen pushing the surprised policeman before hitting him in the face, twice.

The musician has tweeted that he would give “full cooperation” to any investigation.

His action drew widespread condemnation from Nigerians, with many calling for his immediate arrest and prosecution.

Slapping a police officer is a serious offence in Nigeria, and if charged and found guilty, he risks three years in jail.

Kuti is the last child of Fela and leads his father’s former Egypt 80 band.

In 2020, he announced a revival of his father’s defunct political party – Movement of the People – but was unable to register it with authorities.

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