By News Express on 16/04/2017
The Return of Jihadism and Persecution of Christians in Nigeria
Christians and the Christian faith are also gravely endangered in Nigeria particularly under the Buhari Administration, which has been accused of running an Islamist government and policy in the country. According to the Christian Open Doors International, in its Report of 2015, a total of not less than 11,500 Christians lost their lives from 2000 to 2014 to Boko Haram terrorism in the northern Nigeria. It also found that 1.3 million Christians fled to escape being killed by Boko Haram terrorists during the period.
The Open Doors International is an international advocacy group against persecution of Christians worldwide. It further found that 13,000 churches and 1500 Christian schools were destroyed between 2000 and 2014. The Religion of Peace Organization International, another anti Christian persecution watchdog, had also documented the loss of 2,528 Christian lives in Nigeria in 2014 alone. On our part, we held that over 13,000-14,000 Christians were killed, out of over 20,000 killed between 2009 and 2015 in the anti Christianity insurgency in northern Nigeria.
The Open Doors International further disclosed in its 2015 Report that Christians lost 4,028 lives to Boko Haram Jihadists in Nigeria in 2014 alone. The Global Terrorism Index of the Institute for Economics and Peace had also in its 2015 Report disclosed that 5,709 lives were lost to Boko Haram and Nomad Fulani terrorism in Nigeria in 2014, with Boko Haram accounting for 4,480 while Nomad Fulani terrorists accounted for 1229. Most of those killed are Christians. In the 2016 Report of the Christian Persecution Watchdog International based in Washington DC, USA; Nigeria was identified as one of the three “worst of the worst” out of 12 countries with notoriety in the persecution of Christians.
It is recalled that Boko Haram terrorism was believed to have been used extensively by northern radical Muslim politicians and other fundamentalist Islamists to decimate most, if not all Christian communities in the Northeast and parts of Northwest Nigeria. Boko Haram terrorist group started in 2002 in a remote part of Borno State, Northeast Nigeria, but was later hijacked after 2011 by the named radical Islamists to ground the then central government headed by a Christian southerner, Dr. Goodluck Jonathan and Islamise the north in line with the ideology of the Islamist terrorist group.
The year 2014 was the bloodiest year for Nigeria and its Christian populations; owing to the nearness of the 2015 general elections particularly the presidential election. A total of 5,709 lives were lost to Boko Haram and Nomad Fulani terrorism within the year (GTI Report 2015), out of which Christians were about 70% or more.
Since the emergence of Retired Major Gen Muhammadu Buhari as Nigeria’s sixth civilian President in late May 2015, an alarming dimension has been added to safety and growth of Christian faith and religion in Nigeria. There appears to be a radical shift and channelling of huge material and military resources from Boko Haram terrorism to Nomad Fulani terrorism by northern Islamist politicians and their likes in the Armed Forces of Nigeria.
That is to say that the named Islamist radicals of the northern Nigeria have technically abandoned Boko Haram terrorism and focused their attention and energy to Nomad Fulani terrorism for the purpose of sustaining their Jihadist campaigns against Christian dominated populations in Nigeria’s Southeast, South-south and old Middle Belt regions. The Nomad Fulani terrorist group operates legally in Nigeria under “the Miyatti Allah Cattle Breeders Association of Nigeria”, which has President Muhammadu Buhari as its national grand patron till date.
According to the Global Terrorism Index of the International Institute for Economics and Peace, Nomad Fulani terrorist group, commonly called Fulani Herdsmen, killed 1229 people in 2014 alone with most of them being rural Christians. Over 2000 Christian lives were lost to the Nomad Fulani Jihadists in 2016 alone; the bloodiest year in Fula terrorism in Nigeria in recent times. It is also recalled that the rise of Islam in Nigeria was in the 19th Century spearheaded by a group of Fulani Jihadists led by Shehu Othman Dan Fodio.
The attacks by the Nomad Fulani terrorists on Christians and their holy places of worship in Nigeria radically increased following the emergence in late May 2015 of President Muhammadu Buhari; a prince of Fulani Muslim dynasty in Daura, Katsina State, who remains the national grand patron of “the Miyatti Allah Cattle Breeders Association of Nigeria”; the group strongly and popularly believed to have been vicariously and collectively behind ongoing Fulani terrorism and Jihadism in Nigeria.
In the twenty months of the Buhari Presidency or between late June 2015 and January 2017, over 2800 Christians have lost their lives to Nomad Fulani terrorism across Nigeria with over 30 churches destroyed. Apart from attacking and killing of Christians, their attackers also take over, occupy and Islamise their conquered communities.
Thousands of Christians have also been forcefully converted to Islam in northern Nigeria in the past six years and scores of Christian teenage girls have been forcefully married and converted to Islam as well. In late 2016 alone, not less than 850 Christian lives were lost in Southern Kaduna part of Kaduna State, Northwest Nigeria including 808 killed by Nomad Fulani terrorists in late December 2016 as publicly disclosed on 30th December 2016 by the Catholic Archdiocese of Kafanchan in Kaduna State and 38 killed in the first six months of 2016 as disclosed by the leadership of ECWA Church in Kaduna State.
The Catholic Archdiocese of Kafanchan in Kaduna State had in their 30th of December 2016 press conference disclosed that “a total of 808 mostly Christians were killed by Fulani Herdsmen in Kaduna State in December 2016 in which 57 others were wounded, 16 churches destroyed and 53 villages attacked”. The authorities of the Catholic Archdiocese of Kafanchan also described their attackers as Jihadists. The Archdiocese further accused the Kaduna State Government headed by Malam Nasiru el-Rufai and soldiers of the Nigerian Army of complicity. The authorities of ECWA Church in the State had earlier addressed a press conference saying that the church lost 38 members in the first six months of 2016 to Nomad Fulani Jihadists.
Also in 2016 alone, over 350 mostly Christians were killed in Benue State in the hands of same Nomad Fulani Jihadists. In Enugu State, Southeast Nigeria, over 50 Christian lives were lost in 2016. Several Christian lives have also been lost to Nomad Fulani terrorists in Imo, Delta, Edo, Anambra and Abia States in 2016; likewise in Nasarawa, Taraba and Plateau States.
In these butcheries, not even a single perpetrator from the Nomad terror group or its parent body (Miyatti Allah Cattle Breeders Association of Nigeria) has been arrested and put on trial till date; in a country where over 1500 citizens were massacred for expressing themselves non-violently. More information are contained in our recent publications in the links below: http://www.intersociety-ng.org/component/k2/item/210-intersociety-names-buhari-el-rufai-buratai-nigerian-army-fulani-terror-group-and-christian-leaders-as-major-threats-to-the-safety-and-growth-of-christianity-in-nigeria, http://www.thetrentonline.com/killing-christians-rise-state-jihadism-nigeria-read/, http://www.newsexpressngr.com/news/32953-Kaduna-Killings-Catholic-Bishops-have-sold-out-Intersociety
The Buhari Government’s Widespread Attacks on Media Activists
The freedom of the press and democratic free speeches are also gravely endangered by the present civilian Government of Retired Major Gen Muhammadu Buhari in Nigeria. It is feared and credibly suspected that the infamous anti press freedom Decree No 4 of 1984 is being secretly operated presently in Nigeria. Of various reports of the Buhari Administration’s widespread anti press freedom policies, those of the Committee for Protection of Journalists (CPJ); a New York, USA based anti press persecution advocacy group is our guide.
Instances abound. On July 27, 2016, the CPJ reported that nine armed agents of the Nigerian secret police (SSS) have arrested and detained the publisher of the Weekly Source, Citizen Jones Abiri in his Yenagoa office in Bayelsa State, South-south Nigeria. The operatives searched Abiri’s office and confiscated documents.
The DSS had on July 23 emailed a statement to Nigerian journalists accusing Abiri of being the leader of the Joint Revolutionary Council of the Joint Niger Delta Liberation Force, an armed separatist group. The CPJ also quoted the SSS as claiming that the publisher had confessed to bombing oil pipelines, planning attacks in the capital Abuja, sending threatening messages to international oil companies, and to having been the mastermind of a hoax military coup against President Muhammadu Buhari; charges the publisher strongly denied (See https://cpj.org/2016/07/nigerian-secret-police-detain-publisher.php#more).
On 29th September 2016, the CPJ through its West African Representative, Peter Nkanga, reported that 13 journalists, bloggers and media workers were arrested and detained by security forces in Edo State, South-south Nigeria. The CPJ noted that “the impunity with which Nigerian security forces have recently attacked the press is reminiscent of Nigeria's darkest days of military rule,” and called on “President Muhammadu Buhari’s administration to reverse this alarming slide and let journalists do their jobs without fear of reprisal.”
The CPJ further reported that “at around 1:45 a.m. on September 21, military soldiers and officers of Nigeria's special police, the State Security Service, arrested 10 journalists and media workers from the independent news website Watchdog Media News at the Douban Hotel in Benin, the capital of the southern Nigerian state of Edo”. The CPJ further reported that “the crew was in the city to cover gubernatorial elections scheduled to take place today, according to news reports and that the journalists were brutalised and were arrested wearing only their underwear”.
The CPJ quoted witnesses as saying that the crew were beaten with barbed wire and had cold water poured on their bodies before they were arrested. The CPJ gave the names of the arrested journalists as production manager Tony Abulu; reporters Richard Hasley, Opara Uche, and Handy Romeo Eze; video editor Kelvin Toryila; information technology specialists Lanre Ogunleye, Balogun Ehigie, and Kenneth Danpome; a logistics manager identified only as Mathew; and driver Joe Epi” (https://cpj.org/2016/09/nigeria-detains-13-journalists-bloggers-and-media-.php#more).
On 21st September 2016, the CPJ through its West African Representative, Peter Nkanga reported how Nigeria's cybercrime law is being used to try to muzzle the press. The report has it that since Nigeria's cybercrime act was voted into law in May 2015 authorities have used the accusation of cyber stalking to harass and press charges against at least five bloggers who criticised politicians and businessmen online and through social media.
It further observed that Cyber Stalking, which falls under Section 24 of the act, carries a fine of up to 7 million naira (USD$22,000) and a maximum three-year jail term for anyone convicted of knowingly sending an online message that “he knows to be false, for the purpose of causing annoyance, inconvenience danger, obstruction, insult, injury, criminal intimidation, enmity, hatred, ill will or needless anxiety to another.” It noted that the law was cited in the August 20 arrest of Musa Babale Azare who was detained in the capital, Abuja, by police from Bauchi State and that Musa Babale Azare was accused of allegedly criticising the State governor, Muhammad Abdullah Abubakar, on social media.
Mr Musa Azare, who uses Facebook and Twitter as platforms to criticize the actions and policies of Abubakar and his administration, said he was denied access to his lawyer, and that police did not have authority to arrest him outside Bauchi State jurisdiction. Several other instances were cited in the CPJ report. (https://cpj.org/blog/2016/09/how-nigerias-cybercrime-law-is-being-used-to-try-t.php#more)
On 6th September 2016, the CPJ reported the arrest of a Nigerian online journalist, Citizen Emenike Iroegbu by three armed agents of SSS. Citizen Iroegbu runs the news website Abia Facts, from his home in Uyo, the capital of the southern State of Akwa Ibom, on suspicion of libelling the governor of neighboring Abia State, Dr Okezie Ikpeazu. The operatives searched Iroegbu’s house and took away his laptops, his phones, and his wife’s phones, according to the CPJ (https://cpj.org/2016/09/nigerian-secret-police-arrest-online-journalist.php#more).
The CPJ had also in November 2015 reported that at least 10 people, including officers of the Nigerian Prisons Service, reportedly beat Emmanuel Elebeke, a journalist with the independent daily Vanguard, at the premises of a high court in the capital Abuja on November 12, 2015. The CPJ further noted thus “the reporter, who also takes photographs for the paper, told CPJ he was attacked after taking a photograph of three of the six suspects in a murder trial. According to reports citing Elebeke, the journalist said he was beaten by uniformed officers and a group he believes were family members of the suspects on trial.
Elebeke added that he was handcuffed after refusing to hand over his camera. In an account of the attack published in Vanguard, Elebeke said one official hit him with a gun butt and the others kicked him with their boots. He added: “They stopped the beating when they finally got hold of the camera and made away with it in a prison bus. Elebeke told CPJ he had injuries, including to his legs, and was hospitalized” (Ref: https://cpj.org/2015/12/in-nigeria-journalist-beaten-outside-court-has-cam.php).
Amnesty International, UK, had on 28th September 2016 frowned at and strongly condemned crackdown on journalists and violent assaults on protests by the Buhari Administration through his security forces, particularly the SSS, Army and Police. It observed that such anti democratic and human rights policies shrink civic space and muzzle press freedom and democratic free speeches. In its press release of the said date, it noted that “the continuing spate of arrests and detentions of journalists and bloggers amid the security forces’ violent disruption of peaceful protests underscores how the Nigerian government appears determined to crush dissent and suffocate freedom of expression”.
The organisation called on the authorities “to ensure the rights of Nigerians to freedom of peaceful assembly and freedom of expression, as guaranteed by international human rights law and the Nigerian Constitution” and observed that “the escalation in the intimidation of journalists and bloggers over recent months seems to be little more than a barefaced attempt by the Nigerian government to muzzle dissenting voices in the country”
In the CPJ’s 2016 Report (2016 Global Impunity Index) with spotlights in countries where journalists are slain and the killers go free; Nigeria was ranked 12th out of 13 countries with worst records of anti press freedoms (Ref: https://cpj.org/reports/2016/10/impunity-index-getting-away-with-murder-killed-justice.php#12).
As recently as on Thursday, 19th January, the Abuja Office of the Premium Times; a leading Nigerian online newspaper, was raided by some plain-clothed police officers of the Nigeria Police Force leading to arrest of its Publisher, Mr. Dapo Olorunyomi, and its Judicial Correspondent, Ms Evelyn Okakwu. They were taken away and later released after about three hours and mandated to report back the next morning being Friday, 20th January 2017 for their possible arraignment before a Magistrate Court.
The police officers informed them that they acted based on a complaint lodged against the online Newspaper by the Chief of Army Staff (COAS), Lt Gen Tukur Yufus Buratai, in connection with a story ran by the Newspaper regarding alleged invitation of the COAS by the Code of Conduct Bureau over alleged illicit choice properties purchased by the COAS in Dubai while still in office as a serving soldier and COAS. The arrest has received local and international bashings particularly from the US based Committee for the Protection of Journalist (CPJ) (Reference:http://huhuonline.com/hunew/index.php/huhuonline-more-news/9040-police-raid-premium-times-office-arrest-publisher).
Instances are too many to mention.
We, therefore, submit safely that the state of human rights and related issues under 20 months of the present civilian Government of Retired Major Gen Muhammadu Buhari in Nigeria is nothing to write home about. The human rights abuses and associated regime atrocities are far from being isolated cases. They are widespread and have worsened day in day out; making the citizens of the country endangered species in their own country.
The number of Nigerians that have left the country in the past twenty months of the Buhari Government is in torrents and alarming. In our recent field advocacy visit to Old Market Road in Onitsha Nigeria, it was empirically observed that Nigerians are leaving their country in droves. The area named is noted for “wait and take” passport and other photographs.
We had found during the visit that the business is now dominated by “Embassy Passport” and that out of every six persons that come to take passport photograph, three-four are for “Embassy Passport”. Embassy Passport is the size of passport photograph demanded from prospective travellers at foreign embassies. We were further told that the demand went viral since late 2015.
Most of the Diaspora Nigerians who are critical of the present Buhari Government have also been found to be afraid of coming home and had avoided returning for 2015 and 2016 Xmas and New Year feasts. A database of most, if not all of them on web media is strongly believed to be constantly maintained and updated by the SSS.
Few months ago, printed and pasted names of key members and supporters of the Indigenous People of Biafra (IPOB) who are of local and foreign residency, were leaked to online media from SSS office in Abuja, Nigeria. As we write, those of them in Nigeria are being tracked and arrested by SSS. The arrest and detention is indefinite and without trial.
For instance, Citizen Nnamdi Kanu, who operates the Radio Biafra London (RBL), a major critic of the Buhari Administration, was arrested by SSS in mid October 2015 in his hotel room in Lagos Nigeria, hours after he returned to Nigeria from UK. Since then he has remained in detention without trial or court bail. Despite the fact that he had never used or advocated for violence, he has been subjected to prosecutorial vindictiveness for the purpose of ensuring that he rots in jail at all costs or under trumped up charges.
Barrister Emeka Ugwuonye is a known critic of the Buhari Government since 2015, based in New York, USA. He was monitored by SSS, arrested and detained for days sometime in 2015 on his arrival from USA at an international airport. Dr. John Danfulani, a former lecturer of the Kaduna State University has undergone a series of persecution in the hands of Nigerian security agencies and the Government of Kaduna State since 2015.
He was suspended from the Kaduna State University after being accused of “hate speech” through his facebook page. First arrested and detained in January 2016, he was again arrested and remanded in prison custody for 13 days before he was granted bail on account of public outcries. Instances are a long list and too numerous to mention.
In Nigeria, many of the human rights activists have run away and abandoned mainstream rights activism; and slumbered on account of the Buhari Government’s intolerant and militarist governing styles. Over 70% of rights activists and groups particularly those located in the Lagos/Southwest region of Nigeria have since abandoned mainstream and grassroots rights activism to government mouthpiece activism on account of immorality and fears of the Buhari Government’s militarist governing styles. The few who remain focused and defiant are constantly at higher risk and endangered. Till date, there is no state of rights abuse report under Buhari Government by any Nigerian rights organisation.
Role of SSS in Buhari Government’s Gross Rights Abuses
The dastardly role of the SSS in President Muhammadu Buhari Government’s grossly poor human rights records and widespread abuses is a total replication of its inglorious epoch in the 1980s when the same Muhammadu Buhari held sway as Nigeria’s maximum military ruler. The SSS then operated as “the National Security Organization (NSO)”. In the said Buhari’s military era and subsequent military regimes in Nigeria, then NSO served as private armies or terror squads of the then military heads of State. Most of the forced disappearances or perfect killings and long detention of citizens without trial then were factually linked to the Secret Police Service.
Today, the SSS (as it is now called) accounts for substantial part of the regime atrocities beclouding the present Government of Retired Gen Muhammadu Buhari. The recent late night attacks and violent invasion of the sleeping abode of serving Judges of the Federal and State High Court and those of the Appeal Court and the Supreme Court were carried out by the SSS under the vicarious seal of the President. Most of the indiscriminate arrests and long detention of citizens without trial under the present Government of Retired Major Gen Muhammadu Buhari are carried out by the SSS.
Most, if not all the court orders and judicial pronouncements flouted or disobeyed under the current Government of Muhammadu Buhari is linked to the authorities of the SSS. The over 13 months detention without trial of Sheik Ibrahim Zaky El-Zaky of the Islamic Movement of Nigeria and his wife-Malama Zeenatu is carried out by the SSS; likewise the ongoing violent crackdown and indiscriminate arrest and detention without trial of over a dozen IPOB members. The SSS is also extensively involved in the harassment, attacks, arrest and detention of independent media activists, opposition voices, bloggers and people who criticise his government; including those living abroad.
Apart from being used whimsically and capriciously by President Muhammadu Buhari just as he did during his military’s inglorious epoch in the 1980s, the SSS appears to have totally become an outlaw and untouchable. The law creating the SSS-the National Security Agencies Act of 1986 clearly specifies its core function as “intelligence gathering within Nigeria” among other non essential functions; yet the SSS operates amorphously and without bounds or limits.
Under the present Buhari Government, the SSS is now a law enforcement and street crimes’ fighting security agency. It now fights and combats street crimes, terrorism, kidnapping, corruption, treason, treasonable felony, arson, burglary, homicide, rape, oil theft, stealing, secure VIPs, keeps databases of “enemy citizens” and monitors their movements and arrest them at will; akin to “jack of all trades”. SSS also invades whimsically and capriciously the citizens’ homes in the dead of the night; tortures and detains them for several months without trial in its under-ground cells and surface cells across the country.
As a member of various joint security taskforces maintained in various States of Nigeria including the Southeast and the South-South regions of the country, the SSS participated directly or indirectly in the massacre and other violent crackdowns on unarmed and defenceless protesters particularly the Pro Biafra Campaigners massacred and maimed in their hundreds in the Southeast and the South-south Nigeria between August 2015 and May 2016; and 20th January 2017.
In summary, therefore, the foregoing analysis and accompanied empirical facts and highlighted local or constitutional, regional and international legal instruments mandatorily binding on Nigeria have clearly and unarguably shown that the Buhari’s democratic Nigeria is intensively and extensively lawless and has made the country a land flowing with blood and tears with over 11,000 criminal deaths or killings outside the law in just 20 months including over 1750 State murders.
By the findings of this Report, Nigeria under the presidency of Retired Major Gen Muhammadu Buhari has recorded three genocides in 20 months. They are Shiite Muslim Procession Genocide (by Nigerian Army) of 12th-14th December 2015; Pro Biafra Campaign Genocide (by Nigerian Army, joined by the Nigeria Police Force) of February and May 2016 and others; and Southern Kaduna Christian Genocide (by Nomad Fulani Jihadists circumstantially and vicariously backed by the Buhari’s Government) of December 2016. There is also Rann War Crime of 17th January 2017 following wilful bombing of an IDP camp in Borno State, Northeast Nigeria by Nigerian Air Force, killing not less than 236 and injuring over 90 others believed to be dominated by women and children.
Also by the findings of this Report, widespread human rights abuses and abuse of office are the major policy direction of the Buhari Government. The constitutional freedoms of the press, expression, association and movement and rights to personal liberty, life, fair trial and hearing and dignity of human person have received widespread abuse and contempt.
The muzzling of democratic free speeches and press freedom by the Government of Retired Major Gen Muhammadu Buhari has also made media practice in Nigeria difficult and dangerous particularly in the area of print, online and visual media. Despite the fact that Section 22 of the Nigeria’s 1999 Constitution tasks “the press; radio, television and other agencies of the mass media to at all times be free to uphold the Fundamental Objectives contained in the Constitution and uphold the responsibility and accountability of the Government to the People”; this is hardly the case in the Buhari’s democratic Nigeria till date.
This explains why the press, aided by media corruption; particularly the print and visual, hardly covers widespread human rights abuses including extra-judicial killings carried out by the Buhari Government and its killer security agencies. This Report, therefore, is geared towards presenting the true sorry state of human rights and other regime atrocities in Nigeria less than 20 months of the Buhari Government to the attention of regional and international communities and their non State actors.
Human rights situations and regime atrocities in Nigeria have dangerously deteriorated and deepened to the extent that citizens of Nigerian have left and are still leaving the country in droves while those already abroad, particularly the media and rights activists who want to return to Nigeria are doing so at high risk of their lives and liberties. Till date, Nigeria has no crime victims support welfare or scheme or effective compensatory justice scheme or policy; thereby leaving thousands of victims of the State crimes or regime atrocities to undergo various traumas and repeat attacks with accompanied impunities from the perpetrators of such crimes.
1. International Society for Civil Liberties and the Rule of Law (Intersociety), is calling on the central civilian Government of Retired Major Gen Muhammadu Buhari to end the senseless and wicked massacre by both security forces and armed opposition groups particularly the Nomad Fulani and Boko Haram Jihadists of unarmed and defenceless citizens individually and massively, as well as other forms of regime atrocities pervading its 20 months old civilian Government. There should be total policy reversal and end to policies of militarism and militarisation.
2. The Buhari Government should set aside $5Bliion for adequate compensation of the 1750 victims of State murders and 4000 suspected victims of Police SARS extra judicial killings as well as 2800 killed by Nomad Fulani Jihadists between June 2015 and January 2017. The $5Billion Crime Victims Compensation Scheme, which will be subject to 50% upward review every five years if unpaid; should be divided into four categories of: $1Billion to members or families and group-victims (IPOB) of over 270 slain members of IPOB and other Pro Biafra Campaigners; $500Million to over 370 terminally shot and injured Pro Biafra Campaigners; $1.5Billion to 1120 slain members of the Shiite Muslims and their IMN as well as $500Million for 400 of their members terminally shot and wounded.
The sum of $500Million should be set aside by the Buhari Government through its Ministry of Police Affairs for compensation of 4000 victims who may most likely have been slain in the past 20 months, by way of custodial killings arising from torture and wilful custodial shootings. This should be done on the basis of proper identification of dead victims by their immediate families and lawyers. The remaining $1Billion should be paid by the Buhari Government to the families and the churches of 2800 dead Christians who are victims of the Nomad Fulani Jihadism in since June 2015.
This is on account of the Buhari Government’s vicarious culpability, by way of aiding and abetting. As the national grand patron of “the Miyatti Allah Cattle Breeders Association of Nigeria”, President Muhammadu Buhari appeared to have allowed personal sentiments to becloud his official position as the father of the country and protector of every citizen irrespective of his or her ethno-religious and age background or identity.
3. The Buhari Government must arrest and prosecute all the perpetrators of the above mentioned heinous crimes perpetrated between June 2015 and January 2017. Those to be arrested and prosecuted include the current Army Chief of Staff, the former IGP of Police (August 2015-May 2016), the current IGP of Police, the Chief of Air Staff, the Chief of Defence Staff, the GOC 82nd Division of the Nigerian Army, Enugu (from August 2015 to May 2016); the Commanders of 302 Artillery Regiment and 144 Battalion of the Nigerian Army in Aba and Onitsha (August 2015 to May 2016 or till date) and Major M.I. Ibrahim of the Nigerian Military Police, who militarily led the May 29th and 30th Biafra Heroes Day massacre in Nkpor, Onitsha and Asaba.
Others are Commissioners of Police of Anambra and Abia States (August 2015 to May 2016) as well as the Aba Area Commander and Deputy Commissioners of Police for Operations in Anambra and Abia State (from August 2015 to May 2016); as well as the Governors of Anambra, Abia and Kaduna States, for aiding the State security agencies and criminal entities in the mass killing of unarmed and innocent Pro Biafra Campaigners and Christian citizens in their respective States. The principal officers of the “Miyatti Allah Cattle Breeders Association of Nigeria” should be arrested and charged for manslaughter as well as immediate proscription of the registered organisation and its presidential declaration as a terrorist organisation.
Where the Buhari Government fails in 90 days to bring to justice the above mentioned public office holders and their sub commanders and foot perpetrators; other than those covered by local constitutional immunities in the mean time; then the international community and other international non State actors particularly the ICC, the UN Security Council and African regional criminal courts, etc should act without further delays. These can be done through establishment of the UN Special Criminal Court for Nigeria or through ICC or African Special Criminal Court for Nigeria or foreign municipal courts with international criminal and civil jurisdictions. Those covered by local constitutional immunities such as the current President of the Federal Republic of Nigeria and the three named serving Governors should be internationally investigated and prosecuted for genocide, war crimes and crimes against humanity.
4. The Government of Muhammadu Buhari should re-organise and restructure Nigeria’s security establishments and their headships and revert to the constitutional geopolitical equity and fairness in accordance with Section 14 (3) of Nigeria’s 1999 Constitution. To this effect, there shall be mass sack of the present heads and strategic commanding officers of the Nigerian Armed Forces and the Police so as to rid them of their present gross lopsidedness and northern Muslim grips and dominations; which have brought about the present grossly lopsided citizens’ policing representation and protection along ethno-religious lines.
•Excerpted from the Special Report, Welcome To Bleeding Republic Of Nigeria: A Land Flowing With Blood And Tears, recently released by the International Society for Civil Liberties & the Rule of Law (Intersociety), Onitsha Nigeria. The full report is available in print and on the Intersociety website, www.intersociety-ng.org
Source News Express
Posted 16/04/2017 10:14:15 AM
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