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Amotekun: Group task South West governors on human rights

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A non-governmental organisation, Citizen’s Gavel, yesterday charged the SouthwestGovernors to prioritise human rights concerns in the proposed Amotekun Bill. 

The group declared that for Amotekun to succeed as a community securityintervention, its foundational laws, concepts, principles, policies andregulations must be totally imbued with adequate human rights provisions.

Speaking in Lagos, the Team Lead for Citizens’ Gavel, NelsonOlanipekun charged state governments and their lawmaking bodies to payutmost attention to human rights issues in the process of establishingAmotekun, emphasising that the inadequacy in human rights standards in thepresent security architecture of Nigeria has worsened rights abuses by somesecurity outfits. Olanipekun warned that it would be of greater damage for Amotekun toevolve, only to contribute to the terrible human rights violations prevalent in the security sector.  

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The group recommends that the Amotekun Bill make provisions for thepunishments and other disciplinary measures that can be adopted, wheneverthere is a violation of human rights provisions. He said Section 25 (12) (f) of the bill provides that “the complaintboard should recommend its decision and any such action deemed fit and sendits recommendation(s) to the Attorney General in respect of every complaintand request received”. 

This section, he said, reveals that the complaint board is not independent , as posited in the provision and all its powers are subject to theratification of the Attorney General of the State. Thus, the complaintboard is almost powerless suspects and hand such suspects over to the Police.

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