HURIWA To Malami : Human Rights Aren’t Cow Rights
. Condemns IGP For Ordering Mass Shooting Of IPOB
A civil rights advocacy group, the Human Rights Writers Association of Nigeria (HURIWA) has said that it is an irredeemable illogicality for the Attorney General of the Federation and Minister of Justice Alhaji Abubakar Malami to compare the ban on open grazing of cows in the South to a ban on the sale of vehicular spare parts in the North.
“These two items are incomparable because whilst one is sold in an organised shopping mall by traders who pay rents and taxes to state governments, cows that are openly grazed violently invade farm lands and have often caused destruction to farms,” HURIWA said.
Also, the rights group has described as unconstitutional and primitive, the reported directive to the police by the acting Inspector General of Police Usman Alkali Baba to engage in extralegal killing of suspected members of the Indigenous Peoples’ of Biafra (IPOB).
According to the group, the directive by the acting IGP directly offends sections 33 (1) which states thus: “Every person has a right to life, and no one shall be deprived intentionally of his life, save in execution of the sentence of a court in respect of a criminal offence of which he has been found guilty in Nigeria ” and 36 (5) which provides that: “Every person who is charged with a criminal offence shall be presumed to be innocent until he is proved guilty, provided that nothing in this section shall invalidate any law by reason only that the law imposes upon any such person the burden of proving particular facts.”
HURIWA said the implication of the illegal order of the Acting IGP was that the police chief lacked respect for the constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria of 1999 (as amended) even as the group said it was aware that already a coalition of well over 200 civil rights bodies was compiling evidence to take the acting IGP to the International Criminal Court in the Hague, Netherlands to face prosecution for crimes against humanity being perpetrated in the South East by his operatives on his orders.
HURIWA which faulted the AGF for criticising Southern governors for banning open grazing stated : “We are not in any way shocked that the Federal Attorney General and Minister of Justice Abubakar Malami, a Fulani born lawyer and politician, has attacked Southern governors for taking practical steps to checkmate the rampant invasions of farms in the South by armed Fulani herdsmen. It does appear that a federal attorney general does not understand the laws in such a way that he is mixing up animal rights and human rights. The minister of justice of President Muhammadu Buhari is unaware that the fundamental human rights provisions enshrined in the Nigerian Constitution are not animal rights which is why they are classified as human and not animal rights.
READ ALSO: Open Grazing Ban: You Have A Terrible Mindset Not Befitting A SAN, Akeredolu Tells Malami
“That the justice minister of Nigeria now speaks for armed Fulani herdsmen is an unmitigated scandal but nevertheless not very strange to us because of our personal experience in written exchanges with the Federal Attorney General and MinisterofJustice Abubakar Malami recently.
“This is because, the same minister had written to us a response saying his office has not prosecuted any alleged armed Fulani herdsmen responsible for the many massacres around Nigeria since 2015 because according to Malami, government has no case file on these herdsmen killing farmers.”
HURIWA recalled vividly that Malami said that the resolve to ban open grazing by southern governors was equivalent to prohibiting spare parts trading in the north.
The rights group recalled that last Tuesday, southern governors resolved to ban open grazing and the movement of cattle by foot, after a meeting in Asaba, Delta State just as the resolutions of the southern governors have been greeted with mixed reactions from different parts of the country.
On the development on Wednesday in an interview on Channels Television, Malami faulted the decision of the southern governors, saying it did not align with the provisions of the constitution.
The attorney-general said the decision “does not hold water” in the context of human rights as enshrined in the constitution.
“It is about constitutionality within the context of the freedoms expressed in our constitution. Can you deny the rights of a Nigerian?” he queried.
“For example: it is as good as saying, perhaps, maybe, the northern governors coming together to say they prohibit spare parts trading in the north.
“Does it hold water? Does it hold water for a northern governor to come and state expressly that he now prohibits spare parts trading in the north?”
Reacting to the justice minister’s outburst HURIWA said it was not surprised because the minister had categorically expressed a lack of interest in prosecting armed Fulani herdsmen.
READ ALSO: South Banning Open Grazing Is Like North Banning Spare Parts Trade – Malami
The rights group said : “Malami stated this in a document with reference number: MJ/LIT/ABJ/HRWAN/440/2020, dated October 7, 2020 that he wouldn’t prosecute armed Fulani herdsmen because there is no case file.
The AGF document, which was signed by the Acting Director, Civil Litigation and Public Law Department, Mrs. Maimuna Shiru on behalf of the minister, was in response to a letter written by an Abuja-based civil rights organisation, the Human Rights Writers Association of Nigeria.
“HURIWA had in a letter signed by its National Coordinator, Emmanuel Onwubiko, asked the minister to prosecute armed Fulani killers.
“However, the minister in his reply claimed the cases in question had no case files and as such he could not prosecute them.
“In his reply to a request by the civil rights group’s demand for the prosecution of the suspects, the minister instructed an acting director in the ministry to write, ‘I am directed by the Honourable Attorney General of the Federation and Minister of Justice to acknowledge receipt of your letter dated August 13, 2020, on the above subject matter and to inform you that your letter has been noted.
“I am further directed to inform your office that the alleged crimes cannot be prosecuted without case files. Please, accept the assurances of the best regards of the Honourable Attorney General of the Federation and Minister of Justice’ “.
After receiving the AGF’s reply, HURIWA wrote a letter to the Ambassador of the United States of America, Mary Beth Leonard.
The letter titled, “Take note that (the) Nigerian Government is unwilling to prosecute mass killers,” was received by the American Embassy in Abuja, on October 14, 2020.
The letter partly reads: “Our appeal is that you use your good offices to demand that the Nigerian President take action to prosecute these mass killers who are roaming about freely even after they were paraded by the Inspector-General of Police.”
HURIWA said the justice minister deliberately feigned ignorance of the Land Use Act which gives the governors control over the lands in their states which implies that legally, governors have the constitutional powers to ban open grazing.
The rights group said the best way to obtain justice for farmers and families murdered by armed Fulani herdsmen was for the justice minister to resign immediately and find a full time job as the lawyer to the Miyetti Allah Cattle Breeders Association.
Read more authentic news on our social media platforms
Robbers Loot N30m Goods At Ikota Shopping Complex
. Owners Report Security Firm To Police
For about two decades, Dr. Helen O. Eto, CEO, Superior Mobile Investment Ltd and iClick Gadgets, has been doing business peacefully at Ikota Shopping Complex which borders Victoria Garden City (VGC), Lekki Peninsula, Lagos. The shopping facility is run by HFP Engineering Ltd.
However, robbers struck at the complex that has about 1,850 shops in the early hours of March 7th, 2023. Finesse Security Ltd guards claimed that they forgot to lock the gate of the facility, allowing the hoodlums to cart away about N30 million phones and other goods from Mrs. Eto’s freshly restocked shop.
Lamentingher ordeal to the police in Ajah and Panti, Yaba, Mrs. Eto said : “We took bank loans for the business plus our life savings all of which are gone. This is a wicked plan against us in our old age with children still in school, other dependants and various bills.
“We plead that the police should help us to get to the bottom of the looting to save us from early deaths as our BPs have shot up sharply because this is our main source of livelihood. A list of the goods looted from the shop was/is attached to my statements at Ajah Police Station and SIB, Yaba.”
Omokioja Julius Eto, Chairman, Editorial Board of The Daily Times and a media consultant, corroborated his wife’s account. Eto, a former Associate Editor of The Guardian and Editor-in-Chief of The Trumpet, said: “The robbery is shocking because the security gate is inaccessible even to shop owners at night, our shop is just a stone’s throw from the gate and it would have taken about at least two hours to cut through the shop’s security system.
“This makes us to strongly see the guards as the main suspects. We were not immediately notified by the security firm or the facility managers (HFP) of the robbery which we only got to be aware of at about 8.20am through one of our employees.”
A former Editor of The Daily Times, Eto who has also worked as a senior editor at the Punch and Thisday, added: “Since the break-in on March 7 till today March 30, Finesse Security Ltd has not called to sympathize with us but has been evading our calls and texts to its MD whom we learnt travelled abroad after the robbery.
“We have been doing everything to support the police investigation despite our predicament and hope they will bring the culprits to justice.”
Arrest Interim Govt Plotters Now – Governors
Governors of the 36 states have asked the Department of State Services (DSS) to arrest and prosecute those involved in a plot to put in place an interim government as part of moves to truncate the nation’s democracy.
Condemning the move, the governors under the auspices of the Nigeria Governors’ Forum assured of their commitment to continue in the defence of Nigeria’s democracy as elected leaders.
In a statement on Friday by NGF Chairman and Governor of Sokoto State, Aminu Tambuwal at the end of the 4th meeting of the Governors, he warned the DSS against issuing statements without arrest as that amounts to heating the polity.
Tambuwal said, “The Forum deliberated extensively on the alleged plot by some unscrupulous elements to install an interim government, as contained in the recent statement issued by the Department for State Services (DSS). Governors condemned in the strongest terms, any unconstitutional means of regime change and pledged its commitment to continue to defend Nigeria’s democracy as elected leaders.
“In addition, the Forum believes that issuing statements without arrests is akin to heating up the polity and causing unwarranted tension in the country. It called on the DSS to do its job by immediately arresting and prosecuting all those involved in the plot as a matter of urgency.”
Recall that the DSS had on Wednesday confirmed rumours that a section of the political class was planning for an interim government in order to truncate the result of the recently-concluded general elections.
The Spokesman for the DSS, Dr. Peter Afunanya in a statement said that the agency had identified some key players in the plot for an Interim Government in Nigeria but did not give the names of the masterminds.
The agency had said that the planners of the interim government had already held several meetings, during which they weighed many options to actualize their plot including sponsoring endless mass protests across Nigerian cities, securing a warrant to declare a state of emergency or a court injunction to stop the inauguration of the executive and the legislature at the federal and state levels.
BREAKING:Lagos Govt Arraigns Chrisland School, Principal, Others Over Death Of Pupil Whitney Adeniran
The Lagos State government has arraigned Chrisland School, Opebi, its principal, vice principal and two other employees over the death of one of the school’s pupils, 12-year-old Whitney Adeniran.
On Wednesday, the government of Lagos State had filed charges against Chrisland School and four others over the death of the 12-year-old pupil, Whitney Adeniran.
The school and its workers were accused of involuntary manslaughter and reckless and negligent acts.
The workers who were arraigned before Justice Oyindamola Ogala of the Lagos State High Court in Ikeja include Ademoye Adewale, Kuku Fatai, Mrs Belinda Amao, Nwatu Ugochi Victoria and Chrisland School Limited.
The school principal, Mrs Belinda Amao, broke down in tears while in the dock as the court and counsel tried to agree on a date for the commencement of the trial.
Whitney died during the school’s inter-house sports competition at Agege Stadium in Lagos on February 9.
Blessing Adeniran, her mother, had accused Chrisland of negligence over her daughter’s death.
The school’s management, however, dismissed insinuations that there was foul play in the death, saying she slumped in public.
Chrisland also argued that Whitney complained about “not-too-buoyant health” a few days before she died.
However, an autopsy conducted at the Lagos State University Hospital (LASUTH) confirmed that the deceased died from “asphyxia and electrocution”.
In the charges filed on behalf of the state government by the Director of Public Prosecution (DPP), Babajide Martins, who disclosed that their negligence killed Whitney because they failed to ensure her safety.
The charge also disclosed that they all acted in a reckless and negligent manner that endangered human life.
The offences are contrary to Sections 224 & 251 of the Criminal Law, C17, Vol.3, Laws of Lagos State, 2015
If found guilty, the offences carry a penalty of life imprisonment and two-year jail terms respectively.
On Tuesday, the state government granted access to Chrisland High School, Opebi branch, to open for physical learning ahead of the school’s forthcoming examination after parents’ appeal.
The state governor, Babajide Sanwo-Olu had ordered that the school be shut down on March 3, 2023, following the investigation into Whitney’s death.
Sanwo-Olu through the state Ministry of Education said the closure of the school would pave the way for unhindered investigation and afford all stakeholders, including parents, students, staff and friends of the deceased, time to grieve.
The reopening followed an appeal by the Parents of all Chrisland School Units who visited the Ministry of Education on Monday to seek the government’s understanding for “the sake of 500 plus students some of whom also have terminal examinations.”
The management of the school had tendered an apology over Whitney’s death.
NEW TIMES CULTURE
Robbers Loot N30m Goods At Ikota Shopping Complex
Police Arrest Musician Portable After 72-hour Ultimatum
Arrest Interim Govt Plotters Now – Governors
Why GOFAMINT General Overseer Demoted His Deputy
BREAKING: UK Suspends Work, Study, Family Visas For Nigerians Over Ukraine War
BREAKING: First Nigerian Female Vice Chancellor Alele-Williams Is Dead
Opinion2 days ago
Who Needs Counseling In Nigeria?
Arts & Culture4 days ago
22nd Africa Conference 2023 Holds At University of Texas
Arts & Culture2 days ago
The Public Academic In The Eyes Of Change: No Time To Cry
Opinion2 days ago
Professors On INEC’s Will (4)
Business5 days ago
NLC Directs Officials To Monitor Banks Over Cash Scarcity