Amnesty International Accuses FG Of Obstructing Justice For 640 Boko Haram Detainees Murdered By Soldiers

Global rights group, Amnesty International (AI) has accused the Federal Government of withholding justice for the 640 detainees slaughtered by soldiers in Maiduguri barracks two years ago.

AI stated that Nigerian authorities have failed to conduct an effective, impartial and independent investigation into the killings after they were slaughtered by Nigerian soldiers.

Amnesty International in a statement stated that it has repeatedly called on the government to initiate an independent and effective investigation into the crimes under international law but despite repeated promises by the government that AI’s report will be looked into, no concrete step have been taken to begin an independent investigation.

It stated, “?Two years after at least 640 recaptured detainees were slaughtered by soldiers of the Nigerian Army, the authorities have failed to conduct an effective, impartial and independent investigation into the killings, said Amnesty International.

“The detainees – men and boys, many arbitrarily arrested in mass screening operations – were killed after they fled the barracks in Maiduguri, Borno state on 14 March 2014 following a Boko Haram attack. The majority were shot. The others had their throats cut. To mark the anniversary of this massacre, Amnesty International campaigners will be gathering outside Nigerian embassies around the world to call for independent investigations and prosecutions.

“It is shocking that two years after these horrific killings there has been no justice for the victims and their relatives,” said Netsanet Belay, Amnesty International’s Research and Advocacy Director for Africa.

“The lack of an independent investigation has meant that no one has been held to account for the killings, strengthening an already pervasive culture of impunity within the military.”

“Amnesty International has extensively documented the events of 14 March 2014, interviewing dozens of witnesses, verifying video evidence of the killings and their aftermath and confirming the locations of mass graves through satellite imagery.

“In June 2015 Amnesty International published extensive evidence of war crimes and possible crimes against humanity committed by the Nigerian military. The report found that the military extrajudicially executed at least 1,200 men and boys, and almost certainly many more, between 2012 and 2014. A further 7,000 detainees died in military detention as a result of starvation thirst, disease, torture and a lack of medical attention. Torture is routinely and systematically used by security forces in Nigeria, both during arrest and in detention. Soldiers arbitrarily arrested more than 20,000 suspects since 2011 and detained the overwhelming majority of them without access to their families or lawyers, without formal charges and without ever bringing them to court.

“Amnesty International has repeatedly called on the Government of Nigeria to initiate independent and effective investigations into its evidence of crimes under international law and to implement critical safeguards against human rights violations.

“Yet, despite repeated promises by President Buhari and his government that Amnesty International’s report would be looked into, no concrete steps have been taken to begin independent investigations. Many safeguards remain absent, for example suspects continue to be held in military detention without access to their lawyers or families, without charge and without being brought before a judge.

“After more than nine months in office, President Buhari must take urgent action to provide justice for the conflict’s thousands of victims and prevent such violations occurring again.

“In the two years since the Giwa killings, the pattern of unjustified use of lethal force by the military has continued with no one held accountable,” said Netsanet Belay.

“From Giwa to Zaria, from the north east to the south east, the time has come to break the cycle of impunity that has gripped Nigeria. This should start with justice for the Giwa 640.”

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APC Chieftain, Wife, Son Murdered In Rivers

As the schediuled date for the various rerun elections in Rivers State draws near, political killings in the state has assumed an alarming rate.

on Saturday, a chieftain of the All Progressive Congress (APC) in Omoku, Ogba/Egbema/Ndoni Local Government Area of the state, Franklin Obi was murdered by yet to be identified persons.

Obi was reportedly killed alongside his wife, Iheoma and a teenage son, Bestman.

The gunmen who stormed the politician’s home at about 9pm on Saturday were said have beheaded him before killing some members of his family.

The state’s police commissioner Musa Kimo visited the home of the slain politician on Sunday to commiserate with them.

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Victory For Nigeria, Change Is Here! By Ogundana Michael Rotimi

Fellow Nigerians, permit me to use this medium to wish you a Happy Easter celebration in a season of change. Let the reason for the season bring salutary change to your lives.

When we started the struggle for change, some people thought we were just blabbing and being jobless. Some thought we were looking for cheap recognition while others said some politicians have paid us. Some even accused us of just being pointless and unnecessarily crying foul. But today, we are vindicated. History has absolved us!

Saturday 28th March 2015, marks a turning point in the history of our country and democracy. This day will be remembered by Nigerians as the day of Change.

Nigerians went to the polls, made their choice, and for the first time, they voted out an incumbent president in a broadly peaceful election.

The 2015 presidential election was not about any of the two major candidates- President Jonathan and General Buhari, which contested for the highest position in the country. It was about the country. It was about securing the future of the nation.

The achievement at the polls is a plus to our democracy and a sign of leadership to the continent. As it stands, this election has done more in cementing our democratic set up and has made it stronger.

This election has not divided us as postulated by some people and groups. Rather it has shown to the world that we are great people with great minds and can become a great nation.

The presidential election also confirms to the world that our diversity represents our strength. That we are much stronger, well blended and bonded than the world could imagine. I will not be wrong to say that against all odds Nigeria refuses to break and won’t break.

It`s so important to say that this victory is not just for General Buhari and Professor Osinbajo alone, nor is it for the All Progressives Congress (APC) party alone. It is a victory for Nigeria. It is a victory both for those that lost the election and for those that won the election. It is a victory for our democracy.

This victory will make leaders in government and people at the helm of affairs to sit up. The fact that those in government now know that they can be brought down when they fail perfom their responsibilities and deliver on their promises is a success for our democracy.

Nevertheless, I must appreciate and commend the relentless efforts and zeal of the President-Elect, General Muhammadu Buhari for dedicating so much passion to bringing positive change to the affairs of this nation since he started contesting for the race in 2003.

Meanwhile, to Professor Osinbajo, you have a lot to do, the world is watching and expecting you to compliment your educational status with leadership.

However, to President Goodluck Jonathan, you have shown leadership and maturity for conceding defeat even in the face of negative pressures. I personally understand that conceding defeat could sometimes be very difficult, but you did! History will remember you. Notwithstanding, I must quickly add that, that does not make you a HERO! It only made you a normal human being, who did the right thing that was expected of him.

While to Namadi Sambo, you are a gentleman, history will remember your gentility.

In addition, to the APC, congratulations to you. I hope that you will deliver on your promises and bring salutary changes to the lives of the people. To the People`s Democratic Party (PDP), it is now time to rebuild yourself, correct your flaws, and come out stronger. I do not want a one party society but a society with stiff competitions among political parties. That’s the only way we can have a better government and leadership.

And passionately to the people, I must say that the victory is yours. This change would not have been possible without you. It just didn`t happen but it happened peacefully. It`s so rare to see change happen ‘’peacefully” in developing countries like ours. But you did it!

Thoughtfully, I would prefer that this victory is dedicated to those that lost their lives to the Nigerian Immigration Service recruitment exercise, to the over 200 abducted #ChibokGirls and to all other victims of terror and that of incompetent, careless and clueless leadership. You deserve the victory!

Finally, Dear General Buhari, I hope you have learnt from President Jonathan, he seems to be a good man with good intentions but the men around him were not supportive.

Therefore, when you`re ready to choose those that will constitute your cabinet, two qualities must come first before all others, they are- “Competence and Integrity”. When you do this, your regime will be recorded for you as excellent.

The presidential election is over, we must now come together, work together and build an indivisible nation. It`s a victory for all.

God Bless Nigeria

Ogundana Michael Rotimi

I tweet @MickeySunny

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