A pro-democracy and Civil rights body, Human Rights Writers Association Of Nigeria (HURIWA), says the belated decision by the Army’s headquarters to investigate the Amnesty International’s report on the killing of over 200 members of the Indigenous Peoples of Biafra (IPOB) and rights abuses is an afterthought which lacks credibility.
HURIWA also maintained that although the military authority could institute internal investigative mechanisms to verify allegations of widespread human rights abuses and recommend the culprits for appropriate administrative or legal sanctions but this decision to investigate a report that the military institution has severally debunked amounted to mere academic exercise and would inevitably invent a predetermined conclusion.
Responding, the Director, Army Public Relations (DAPR), Brig-Gen. Sani Usman, said the Army is not aware of the alleged statement issued by HURIWA and the basis of its petition, so, it would not respond to it.
He however maintained that the panel was set up after due diligence, with the hope that it unravels the true position of the allegations made about the activities of Army personnel, especially as they relate to human rights abuse and extra judicial executions, among others.
All interest groups can submit their positions to the panel for consideration, as the panel had said they would go round the mentioned areas to get the necessary submissions.
The Chief of Army Staff (COAS) Lt. Gen. Tukur Buratai had said membership of the committee was carefully chosen to ensure credibility of the findings and the final recommendations.
The panel President, Ahmed Jubrin, a retired Major General has also assured that he would along with his members visit all the areas mentioned, interview stakeholders and seek their inputs as appropriate.
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