We Reject Army’s Kangaroo Rights Abuses Investigation Panel And Request For Proper Criminal Investigation And Punitive Measures Against Buratai & Others
The gross rights abuses in the past 21 months of the ailing Buhari’s Government of Nigeria can never be investigated by the same perpetrators of the heinous crimes (i.e. Nigerian Army and its COAS: Tukur Yusuf Buratai, etc).
Any so called special investigation panel set up by the Nigerian Army is manifestly a kangaroo and totally rejected. As a matter of fact, the Nigerian Army should be barred from meddling into investigations associated with same; except its right to be heard.
There shall be proper criminal investigation and punitive measures against Buratai and Company; followed by an unbiased and balanced Special Judicial Commission of Enquiry set up by the Government of Nigeria, for the purpose of victims’ remedies or compensatory justice and serious administrative reprimands-Emeka Umeagbalasi-Criminologist & Graduate of Security Studies; and Board Chairman of Intersociety.
The forgoing represents the key stand of the leadership of International Society for Civil Liberties & the Rule of Law.
That is to say that the Nigerian Army’s latest special panel to investigate itself concerning its basket-load of gross rights abuses in the country is not only a kangaroo, but also panicky, escapist and totally unacceptable.
It is also a grave affront to the two famous rule of law principles of nemo judex in causa sua (no one should not be a judge in his/her own case or cause) and audi alteram partem(let the other side be heard or no one should be condemned unheard).
It is on indisputable record that the Nigerian Army including its Chief of Staff, Lt Gen Tukur Buratai; is responsible for over 70% of the gross rights abuses including custodial deaths, terminal wounding, grave torture, enforced disappearance, illegal detentions, mass shooting and killing of unarmed and defenseless ethnic and religious activists and mass killing of civilians or noncombatants in conflict zones.
Others grossly anti human rights and anti-constitutional conducts of the Nigerian Army are violent conducts by way of physical threats and psychological intimidations; ethnic cleansing, ethno-religious bias, undermining of constitutional liberties, promotion and escalation of policy of militarization and encouragement of citizens’ militancy and radicalization as well as fueling the rapid and uncontrollable inflow of illicit Small Arms & Light Weapons (SALWs) in wrong or recalcitrant hands particularly in the Northeast and Niger Delta regions.
Apart from the foregoing, our forensic look at the so called “Eight-Man Military Panel of Investigation”, its composition and highly restricted terms of reference; clearly shows that the kangaroo panel is not only an exonerative panel, but also evidence cleanser and a fire brigade approach.
When a similar panel was set up in March 2016 by Nigerian Army and its COAS through its Provost Marshall; it was mired in obvious conflict of interest and lack of moral compass. As expected, its investigation was dead on arrival.
To make the matter worse, 13 slain bodies of IPOB members strongly suspected to have been killed and dumped inside an Aba burrow pit by the 144 Battalion of the Nigerian Army in the area; were suspiciously set ablaze by the culprit State agents, for the purpose of erasing traces and evidence destruction.
Also, a critical look at the composition of the so called “Army Investigative Panel” has further exposed the dubious and devious intents of the authorities of the Nigerian Army headed by Lt Gen Tukur Yusuf Buratai. The composition under reference is a total replica of the present gross lopsidedness in the Nigerian Army; which is patently Jihadist or Islamism friendly.
Shockingly too, the same Nigerian Army that says it wants to investigate the conduct atrocities of its personnel including the mass killing of Pro Biafra Campaigners of Southeast and South-south extractions has no single serving or retired army officers from the two areas; particularly from the Southeast as members of its so called “Special Military Panel”.
For the avoidance of doubt, the names of members of the kangaroo panel are: Major Gen Ahmed Tijani Jibrin, rtd (chairman), Brigadier General Dadan Garba, rtd; Brigadier General Abdulqadir Guide, rtd; Brigadier General O. Olayinka; Col. L. B. Mohamme; Col. UM Wambai ;Mr Olawole Fapohunda and Lt. Col. CM Akaliro, who is the panel’s secretary.
The composition is not only ethnically sectional, but utterly Muslim and military dominated. It also has cabalistic outlook. It has no iota of regards for the individual and group victims as well as the generality of Nigerians.
Another glaring dubious intent associated with the so called “Army Special Panel” is its restricted terms of reference; such as “not revisiting areas covered by State Governments and the National Human Rights Commission”.
That is to say that the kangaroo panel will not look into the mass killing of over 1000 unarmed and defenseless members of the Islamic Movement of Nigeria.
Strong attempts have been made by the Federal Government of Nigeria through the Kaduna State Government and leprous National Human Rights Commission to exonerate the Nigerian Army and its lead-perpetrators including COAS Lt Gen Tukur Buratai from the Zaria butchery.
The link to the Army statement, announcing the setting up of the kangaroo Special Military Panel is here: http://www.vanguardngr.com/2017/03/army-sets-panel-investigate-alleged-ex-judicial-killings-rights-violations-personnel/
As if these were not enough, the COAS, Lt Gen Tukur Buratai and his Nigerian Army have the audacity to criminalize and stigmatize the 240 unarmed and defenseless civilians including 29 children…