Posted by News Express | 27 August 2017 | 1,862 times
The Human Rights Writers Association of Nigeria (HURIWA) has condemned Governor Rochas Okorocha of Imo State for flouting a subsisting order of an Imo State High Court by forcefully demolishing the ancient Eke-Ukwu market in Owerri municipal, leading to many casualties.
HURIWA accused Okorocha of illegal use of the armed forces to carry out a simple task of stopping possible breach of peace as a consequence of the controversial demolition of the longstanding market in the heart of Owerri city, an action the aborigines kicked against and successfully secured a pending interlocutory court's injunction to halt but which has been brazenly disrespected by the Governor.
The rights group said the killings, if not investigated and offenders arrested and prosecuted, it would forward a petition to the International Criminal Court in The Hague, Netherlands.
In a statement by its National Coordinator, Comrade Emmanuel Onwubiko and the National Director of Media Affairs, Miss. Zainab Yusuf, HURIWA deplored the illegal action of the Imo State Governor which precipitated social upheavals resulting in the extralegal executions of unarmed protesters by armed soldiers and mobile Policemen deployed at the instance of a man who is in total breach of section 6 of the Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, which grants the Judicial powers of the state to the court of competent jurisdictions.
“We are worried by the widening spectre of lawlessness and absolute disregard for the principle of Rule of Law by elected and appointed political office holders.”
HURIWA also condemned what it described as “the dictatorial and lawless administration of Governor Okorocha of APC for violating the sanctity of the Rule of Law and thereby occasioning the gross violations of the sanctity of the lives of the citizens of Imo State who were gunned down for only lawfully kicking against the unlawful and criminal acts of the government.
“We will take legal notice of these infractions and will report the matter to the International Criminal Court in The Hague Netherlands so Governor Okorocha and his lackeys who committed the atrocities in the demolished Owerri township market can be prosecuted for crime against humanity if the Federal Government of Nigeria fails to bring these brutes in military uniforms to face the consequences of their unlawful killings.”
HURIWA called on the civil society community in Imo State to also proceed to press charges against identified armed security operatives who committed “these daylight extrajudicial killings of protesters who posed no harm to anyone but who were simply ventilating their collective outrage at the unconstitutional act of the governor.”
It stressed that those who occupy government positions and believe that they will be there forever are deluding themselves and “the likes of Okorocha must be reminded that political power is ephemeral and that the bloodshed that happened today will not go unpunished particularly for the perpetrators and those who deployed the heavily armed soldiers.”
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