SERAP petitions special rapporteur on Southern Kaduna Killings
The Socio-Economic Rights and Accountability Project (SERAP) has petitioned the United Nations (UN) Special Rapporteur, Ms. Agnes Callamard, on extrajudicial, summary or arbitrary executions.
In a statement issued yesterday in Lagos by its Executive Director, Adetokunbo Mumuni, SERAP urged Callamard to prevail on the Nigerian authorities to halt further killings of innocent citizens in Southern Kaduna.
It called on her to urgently investigate recent allegations of killings of over 800 citizens, mostly women, children and the elderly in the area, by suspected herdsmen, identify the perpetrators and bring them to justice, as well as provide reparations to victims.
The organisation also urged Callamard to request to visit Nigeria to conduct fact-finding mission into the circumstances surrounding the killings.
In the petition dated yesterday and signed by Mumuni, SERAP expressed concern that the killings of citizens in Southern Kaduna amount to serious violations of the rights to life and security of the human person to the respect of the dignity inherent in a human being and right to property guaranteed by not only the Nigerian Constitution 1999 (as amended), but also the African Charter on Human and Peoples’ Rights and the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights, to which Nigeria is a state party.”
The statement alleged that the Nigerian authorities had failed and/or neglected to respect human rights, exercise due diligence to ensure that these rights were not violated by private individuals, such as herdsmen and other unknown perpetrators.
It said Nigerian government should, therefore, be held to account for failing or neglecting to guarantee and protect the rights of the people in Southern Kaduna.
“Regardless of whether such violations are directly or indirectly attributable to the state or its officials, SERAP is concerned that the government has failed and/or neglected to create an environment in Southern Kaduna to end the unlawful killings by failing to move their legal and institutional machinery towards the actual realisation of these rights.
“It is in fact, the failure by the government to take adequate measures to prevent the violence which has contributed to the increasing number of victims.
“SERAP believes that the killings would not have taken place if the Nigerian authorities have taken measures to prevent their happening and to address persistent impunity of those responsible for the violations and abuses,” it said.