Nigerians need justice, UN rights experts say, in call for inquiry into protestor killings |


Whereas extreme use of drive throughout peaceable protests is at all times unacceptable, the 20 October shootings at Lekki toll plaza in Lagos had been “particularly disturbing as a result of demonstrators had been exactly calling for accountability for earlier police brutality”, the consultants mentioned. 

The truth that CCTV cameras and lights had been apparently switched off shortly earlier than troopers opened fireplace signifies “a disturbing stage of premeditation”, they added. 

‘Nigerians want justice’ 

“Since 2005, UN Particular Rapporteurs have repeatedly raised the difficulty of police killings and impunity with the Nigerian authorities”, the eight consultants mentioned. “We now have had 15 years of presidency guarantees, however nothing has modified.  

“Governments come and go, however police brutality is as intractable as ever. Nigerians want justice.” 

Examine police brutality 

Hundreds of Nigerians have taken to the streets since early October to protest in opposition to violations reportedly dedicated by a infamous police unit referred to as the Particular Anti-Theft Squad (SARS). 

Lots of have been injured and an unknown quantity killed within the demonstrations, in accordance with the UN professional, whereas safety providers have allegedly arrested and crushed protestors, and armed people have attacked others. 

“What is especially disturbing is that the authorities mentioned that they had disbanded the SARS and agreed to the protestors different calls for, together with investigations”, the rights consultants acknowledged. “However they instantly introduced the formation of one other comparable unit and haven’t ended the extreme use of drive.” 

Make clear who gave orders 

The UN consultants underscored that systematic police brutality and extreme use of drive in opposition to peaceable protestors have to be independently and impartially investigated.  Perpetrators additionally ought to be dropped at justice. 

 Along with establishing an unbiased inquiry, the Nigerian authorities should make clear why the army was deployed and who gave the order, they mentioned.  

“Any investigation should intention to determine strains of accountability, ship accountability and justice, present treatments and reparations, and advocate structural and systemic modifications,” they mentioned. 

Launch findings of earlier studies 

The eight consultants, who had been appointed by the UN Human Rights Council, will not be UN workers, nor are they paid by the Group. 

They referred to as on the Nigerian Authorities to launch the studies of earlier investigations. 

 “The authorities have promised for years to deal with human rights violations by the safety forces,” they mentioned.  

“Lots of of victims and family of those that died have testified and despatched petitions, however they by no means obtained any treatment, not even the acknowledgement that their rights had been violated. It’s essential that the federal government releases all these studies to the general public earlier than they begin new investigations.”

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