Don’t destroy South East, HURIWA tells Buhari
A pro-democracy organisation, Human Rights Writers Association of Nigeria (HURIWA), has demanded an end to the military occupation of South East.
Arguing that the President Muhammadu Buhari administration must be restrained from “unleashing instability and destruction of private assets in the region”, the rights group noted over 50 years after the civil war, the devastated infrastructure of the old eastern region remained unbuilt.
In a statement by its National Coordinator and Media Affairs, Comrade Emmanuel Onwubiko and Zainab Yusuf, the group insisted that the Federal Government “must not be allowed to destroy property and assets built after the war by individuals in the South East.”
HURIWA wondered why the Nigerian Army did not make use of the expanse of land in Sambisa Forest for the Python Dance since “it had made several claims of chasing away armed Boko Haram terrorists.”
Likening the ongoing military operation to a declaration of state of emergency, the rights group stated that the peaceful and unarmed groups such as the Indigenous People of Biafra (IPOB) do not pose any threats to the territorial integrity of the country.
HURIWA maintained that most people in the region could see the militarisation in the light of the skewed concentration of virtually 75 per cent of military weapon depots and institutions in the north.
It, therefore, urged the National Assembly to compel the armed forces to decentralise the locations of strategic military infrastructure with a view to dousing the mutual recrimination and suspicion in the polity.
HURIWA lamented the alleged breach of human rights in the zone, reminding the military of the consequences of flouting this fundamental rule.
It also decried the invasion of the premises of the Nigeria Union of Journalists (NUJ) by armed security agents.
“We condemn the invasion by the armed security forces of the premises of the Nigeria Union of Journalists in Umuahia whereby many reporters were attacked and their facilities destroyed. We also flay the indiscriminate shooting of civilians protesting the military deployment and the attempt to illegally subject Nnamdi Kanu to house arrest,” HURIWA added.