Delta killings: It’s a violation of rights to life, says NHRC


The National Human Rights Commission (NHRC) has condemned the Thursday’s killing of 16 soldiers and some civilians in Delta state, saying it amounted to violation of rights to life.

A statement signed personally by the Executive Secretary of the NHRC, Chief Tony Ojukwu (SAN), which was made available to journalists on Tuesday said, the commission rejects the practice whereby aggrieved individuals and groups take laws into their hands attacking and killing law enforcement agents.

“Such behaviours occasion human rights violations and distrust. To this extent, it specifically amounts to violations of the right to life and dignity of human person as guaranteed under Article 3 of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights (UDHR), Article 1 of the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights (ICCPR), Article 4 of the African Charter on Human and Peoples’ Rights (ACHPR), and other international instruments to which Nigeria is a signatory”.

According to the NHRC boss, everyone is entitled to life and security of their person under section 33 of the 1999 Constitution of Nigeria (as amended) and added that the killings of security agents which had been going on in several parts of the country are not acceptable.

Citizens, he said, must engage and collaborate with the law enforcement agents, by providing them with the necessary information that will assist them in fishing out those responsible and ensure that they are prosecuted and punished in accordance with the law.

Ojukwu also urged authorities to put necessary mechanisms in place to arrest those involved in the killings, bring all perpetrators to  justice and prevent further occurrence in the future.

“We are keenly monitoring the situation and official investigation in this case to ensure that those who are behind this inhumane and wicked act are quickly arrested, prosecuted and punished in accordance with the relevant international, regional and municipal laws”, he said.

The Commission urged everyone, including the affected community and the Nigerian Armed Forces to sheathe their sword and refrain from any form of reprisals while awaiting for the outcome of the investigation.

Ojukwu expressed the condolences of the Commission to the Chief of Defence Staff, the Chief of Army Staff, the Nigerian military, and the families of the slain soldiers and urged everyone to remain calm and trust that justice will be served accordingly.

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