CLEEN Calls for Inquiry into Human Rights Violation in Ongoing Counter-insurgency War in North East


A call has gone for the inquiry into human rights violations in the ongoing counter-insurgency war in the North East.
The CLEEN Foundation, a non-governmental organisation and a Justice Sector Reform, which organized a three-day workshop ending on Friday with support by Open Society Foundations, called on members of the public to present cases of human rights violation, with promises to ensure that justice is done.
The workshop, which was held in Maiduguri brought security actors and stakeholders from within the troubled North East, and called for human rights accountability in the counter-insurgency strategy in the ongoing war on terrorism.
In the 3-Day workshop, participants drawn from the Police Oversight Agencies, National Human Rights Commission, Office of the National Security Adviser, the Military, Para-military, Civilian JTF, Civil society, traditional/religious leaders, Civil Society and other key stakeholders called for human rights adherence in the counter-insurgency strategy.
Mrs. Chigozirim Okoro, the Assistant Program Manager, Public Safety and Security CLEEN Foundation, said the event is aimed at improving human rights compliance in countering human rights extremism in Nigeria.
She explained that this will be achieved through the review of counter-terrorism laws and strategy by the government.
” This is to ensure that there is respect for the rights of Nigerians by the security agencies in the war against insurgency currently going on in different parts of the country.
” The event seeks to produce a working strategy for state and non-state actors involved in counter extremism in Nigeria with Borno state as a pilot state,” she added
Chigozirim assured that her organization , CLEEN Foundation , will work with the senior hierarchy of the security personnel to ensure that the working strategy is operational. She also urged the security personnel to respect human rights in their operation across the northeast.
Continuing she said: “Participants at the event narrated heartbroken stories of human rights abuse in the hands of the state security actors. They called for a public hearing that will provide a platform for victims of human rights abuse to share and narrate their experience in the hands of security agencies.
“Often, victims find it very difficult to tell their stories, they accuse the state of working with the media not to allow complete reportage of what the real situation is in the affected communities. Participants argued that the only way for them to tell their stories is through a public hearing.
“They also accused the security personnel of harassing and intimidating them for not having the national identity cards and appealed to the federal government to facilitate the issuance of national identity cards to all Nigerian citizens that reside in Maiduguri and other northeast states.
” Some of them explained how they were forced to pay between N200 to N1000 by the security agencies for not having a national identity card,” she   She however called on members of the public to bring up documented protest on human rights violation by the military and security outfits for prosecution.

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