HURIWA decries violence at Lagos APC campaign rally •Accuses Presidency of protecting lawless APC chieftains

Posted by News Express | 10 January 2019 | 667 times

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•HURIWA National Coordinator, Comrade Emmanuel Onwubiko

A leading pro-democracy and non-governmental organisation, the Human Rights Writers Association of Nigeria (HURIWA), has tasked the Gen. Abdulsalam Abubakar-led National Peace Committee and the relevant law enforcement agencies to tackle the rising spate of organised violence by armed political thugs at virtually most top level All Progressives Congress (APC) campaign rallies.

HURIWA also tasked all political parties running for offices to stop the deployment of armed political thugs targeting political opponents, even as the group has demanded appointment of a competent professional to step in as Police Inspector General to take over “from the highly partisan and compromised” outgoing IGP Ibrahim Idris billed to exit the force on the attainment of the statutory 60 years age of retirement “especially because he is an abysmal failure in office.”

The rights group believed that the armed thugs who are masterminding the numerous acts of violence during political meetings have been emboldened by the conspiratorial silence of the security services and particularly the Nigeria Police which has always looked the other way whilst bloody violence are unleashed by hired thugs, apparently because the sponsors are top officials in the different levels of government.

Wondering why the police has chosen to use politically motivated yardstick to refuse to arrest, prosecute and ensure that the full weight of the relevant legal provisions against organised violence and murder are used against suspected sponsored thugs belonging to the APC, the rights group has therefore demanded immediate action against political thugs.

In a media release in reaction to the bloody violence at the flag off of the APC governorship campaign in Lagos in which three persons were reportedly killed and numerous other citizens, including journalists, were injured by hired thugs armed with dangerous weapons, the group said the impunity dates back to even the flag off of governorship campaign by APC in Ekiti state few months ago in which even a former House of Representatives member was injured and had to be flown abroad for medical attention.

HURIWA stated that even at the last national convention of the APC during which the current leadership emerged, there was bloody violence caused by alleged loyalists of the Imo State governor, Owele Rochas Okorocha who allegedly targeted supporters of the then National Organizing Secretary, Senator Osita Izunaso, said to be a member of a coalition that resisted the planned imposition of Okorocha’s son-in-law as his successor in office.

HURIWA, in the statement issued on Wednesday by its National Coordinator, Comrade Emmanuel Onwubiko, and the National Media Affairs Director, Miss Zainab Yusuf, lamented that the police has so far failed to institute charges against any of the armed political thugs apparently because they have the backing of the APC government officials.

“The violence in Lagos has once more brought to the front burner of national discuss the unambiguous compromise of the hierarchy of the Nigeria Police Force who are in breach of the constitution by not effectively enforcing the laws without let or hindrance.”

HURIWA has therefore asked President Muhammadu Buhari to let Ibrahim Kpodum Idris, the outgoing IGP to quit the stage forthwith so a much more competent professional and non-partisan officer is made the Inspector General of Police to salvage the policing institution from global opprobrium.

HURIWA has also demanded the arrest, prosecution and comprehensive sanction for all the armed thugs that carried out the attacks in Lagos which led to fatalities just as the rights group has charged the National Peace Committee to call President Buhari to order to stop him from tolerating political violence and impunity amongst his supporters who are becoming emboldened and much more daring and dangerous to the health of the nation. 

Source: News Express

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