Rights groups fault Amnesty’s report on armed forces

Air Chief Marshal, Alex Badeh

Air Chief Marshal, Alex Badeh

THE Human Rights Writers Association of Nigeria, (HURRIWA), Association of African Writers on Human and Peoples Right and Support Our Patriotic Generals Groups, yesterday condemned the call by Amnesty International (AI) on President Muhammadu Buhari to investigate the activities of some military chiefs for alleged violation of human rights in leading the war against Boko Haram in the North East.

Amnesty International last week asked the president to investigate the activities of former Chief of Army Staff, Gen. Azubuike Ihejirika , Chief of Defence Staff, Alex Badeh, Chief of Army Staff, Kenneth Minimah and Chief of Naval Staff, Ola Saed Ibrahim claiming that they violated human rights in fighting Boko Haram in the North East.

HURIWA in a statement issued by its chairman, Emmanuel Onwubiko after a joint meeting in Abuja, accused AI of allowing itself to be used by certain political elements who it noted are witch hunting Ihejirika since he is allegedly been tipped for the National Security Adviser (NSA) slot.

Onwubiko in the statement wondered why AI singled out some top retired and serving military officers for indictment, stressing that the real war on terror started during the tenure of late President Umaru Yar’ Adua when the Boko Haram leader, Mohammed Yusuf was extra judicially killed by the police.
He noted that in as much as the groups are not against any call for investigation, there must be a holistic investigation rather than singling out a particular group of officers as demanded by Al.

Also, the ‘Support Our Patriotic Generals’ made up of coalition of lawyers, activists and Nollywood actors, added that the authenticity of the video tapes on which the reports relied on were stage-managed, fake and not corroborated by independent sources and therefore cannot be credible.
But the coalition in a press conference addressed by the ex-Coordinator Lawyers’ Group Amnesty International, Nigeria and Director of Constitutional Watch, Aham Njoku, stressed that some of the persons the researchers interviewed before compiling the reports had political scores to settle with the former President Goodluck Jonathan- led administration.

The coalition, which queried the motive behind the reports, accused AI of double standards and urged the president not to act on the report as it was biased, unfounded and tainted to embarrass and decimate the Nigerian army.

According to the group, a potential trial of some Nigeria’s army chiefs at ICC is against the country’s security interest and would undermine the war against terrorism as the terrorists would become emboldened and make the soldiers to become demoralised.

It added that instead of AI sabotaging the anti-terror war in Nigeria, the global rights body should use its investigative skills to help identify the financiers and sponsors of Boko Haram and their sources of arms and ammunitions.

“Till date, despite killing over 15, 000 innocent and defenseless Nigerians in mosques, churches, schools, motor parks, shopping malls, no single Boko Haram member has been reported to the ICC for trial by AI,” the group added.

It continued: “AI and the Prosecutor of the International Criminal. Court at Hague appear set to apply double standards in their proceedings. For instance, in the war against terrorism, no American soldier was indicted by AI nor was any recommended for prosecution at the ICC for the extra-judicial killing of Osama Bin Laden. In fact the international community applauded the execution and congratulated President Obama.
“Also no American General has been tried since United States started using drones to kill terrorists with collateral damages which include the death of several innocent persons nearby”, the group added.

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  • LLLeon

    Amnesty International is also creating mischief in Kenya, attacking the president and deputy president . The allegations made by that organization make headlines but have no basis in fact.

  • Ojiyovwi

    It is only to be expected that turkeys will not vote for christmas. AI is based in Europe and America, so it will not dare to cheekily ask for the criminal indictement of Obama nor the defence industries that supply the killing machines used by BH but denied to the Nigerian gov in the defence of her children. AI are an irritation and no more than that. The first responsibilty of any nation is its sovreign right to protect its population from physical as well as mental harm. BH represents an existential threat to citizens of the Nigerian nation and AI is involved in the mental attack on our people. The government of Buhari should take the strong lead of Mugabe to tell AI to ‘Go Hang’ just as it pursues BH to every nook and cranny and eleiminate these dangers to our people.

  • Ojiyovwi

    A break from gardening before mowing the back lawn. AI is all white, the leading defence companies are headed by whites and the most murderous nations in the world are white nations with the odd balck here and there. Charity begins at home. AI should remove the lug from their face before they can see the speck in our eyes. Having said this, I recognise that some our fellow blacks are desperate enough to be recruited by AI to satify the usual token black and fire their bile at us for the little we do whilst ignoring the monsters they unleash on those who dare to assert their sovreign desire for self determination, the Cuban crisis and the embargo etc.We should take a leaf out of the book of the Israelites who will stop at nothing to teach a lesson of devastation to any who will threaten their population before explaining politiely why these errors are not intetional and that’s usually the end of the matter until the next fight and the repeat. They have the best at this job, Mar Regeb. We need a to clone Mark Regeb and replicate him in all these victim nations of AI.Or just immortalise Mugabe and clone him all over the continent of Africa.