The South-South zone of the Civil Liberties Organisarion (CLO) has condemned the March 20 attack on Amnesty International’s office in Abuja, the Nigerian capital, by a group of protesters.
The protesters asked the human rights body to quit Nigeria within 24 hours.
CLO condemned the action in a statement on Tuesday signed by Chinedu Karl Uchegbu and Styvn Obodoekwe, its zonal chairman and zonal director, respectively.
It alleged that the Nigerian military sponsored the invasion “as a response to AI’s human rights report indicting the Nigerian military of serious human rights violations.”
The human rights group contended that asking AI to leave the country shows the President Muhammadu Buhari-led government tolerates abuse of human rights.
It said that the invasion of the AI’s office “is part of the government’s grand design to intimidate, stifle and silence human rights community and create a climate of fear in the country so that no voice will continue to expose their atrocities.”
It called on the international community and global human rights bodies to prevail on the Federal Government to respect human rights as contained in various human rights instruments to which Nigeria is a signatory.
“We are concerned over the threat to safety and security of the human rights defenders knowing that those behind this dance of shame have no value for human lives. The attack on AI by rented crowd has turned Nigeria into a laughing stock among comity of nations.
“We demand an immediate end to the ignominious siege and a probe into the funds wasted in renting the crowd,” CLO stated.
It further urged the international community to hold the leadership of the country and army chief accountable for the alleged wanton killing of innocent civilians in the southern part of the country by the soldiers as reported by AI.
“The international community should intervene to save Nigeria from the speed lane to full blown tyranny through which it is presently headed,” it added.