Presidency Frowns At Report By Amnesty International On Nigerian Security Agencies

Security Agencies
Malam Garba Shehu, the Senior Special Assistant to President Muhammadu
Buhari on Media and Publicity, made this position known in a statement
in Abuja on Thursday.
The Presidency says the recent report released by the Amnesty
International alleging human rights violation by Nigerian security
agencies is inherently battling with credibility, falling vehemently
short of evidential narration.
Malam Garba Shehu, the Senior Special Assistant to President Muhammadu
Buhari on Media and Publicity, made this position known in a statement
in Abuja on Thursday.
According to the presidential aide, the report is short on credibility
because it does not contain factual leads that could have laid the
foundation for investigative actions.
Shehu noted that findings were attributed to people but proper
description of such people constituting the source of information was
not provided.
He said: “Engagement was claimed to have been made with Nigerian
authorities but which authority is it, is not provided with clarity.
“This then is just a wild goose chase report, in essence.
“In some breath, the report seemed like the one in 2015, and the one
in 2016, and the one after that year, the same things being recycled
again and again.
“It ignores the fact of the existing mechanisms put in place by the
military, as a self-correcting step and the high-level committee
constituted by the Presidency to examine any such claims.”
Shehu observed that over this period of time, the Nigerian military
had indeed established cases of abuse and punishments meted out from
Orderly Room trials and Court Martial that resulted in loss of rank,
dismissals, trials and convictions by civil courts.
He quoted President Buhari during his recent joint press conference
with President Donald Trump at the White House to further buttress his
points as saying: “The government of Nigeria remains deeply committed
to the principles of human rights, as well as promotion and protection
of people’s freedom, even in the process of fighting terror.
“We commit to ensure that all documented cases of human rights abuses
are investigated, and those responsible for violation held
responsible.”
The 2017/2018 Reports of the Amnesty International on Nigeria had
alleged that the Nigerian military “arbitrarily arrested and held
thousands of young men, women and children in detention centres around
the country.
The report alleged that detainees were denied access to lawyers and
family members.
While allegedly accusing the Nigerian Army of various atrocities at
Internally Displaced Persons camp in the North East region of the
country, the Report also acknowledged that the army released 593
detainees in April and 760 in October 2017.
It also stated that the armed group, Boko Haram, had continued to
carry out attacks, resulting in hundreds of deaths.
It said: “Reports continued of extrajudicial executions, enforced
disappearances, and torture and other ill-treatment, which, in some
cases, led to deaths in custody. Conditions in military detention were
harsh.
“Communal violence occurred across the country. Thousands of people
were forcibly evicted from their homes.”
The Nigerian army had since reacted to the Report by dismissing it.
It accused the Amnesty International of deliberately attempting to
tarnish the good image of the army.
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