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Defending Human Rights Abusers In Nigeria: Time For Moribund Southwest Rights CSOs To Leave The Stage And Become Full-Fledged Politicians

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(Intersociety/SBCHROs, Onitsha Nigeria, 23rd December 2016)-The death

of Rights CSOs and their human rights advocacy activities in the

Southwest Nigeria became noticeable prior to the 2015 General

Elections. It became full-fledged from June 2015 to date following the

emergence of the Administration of Retired Major General Muhammadu

Indisputably, Lagos and its surrounding States/environs served as

Nigeria’s epicentre of independence, democracy and human rights

struggles; reaching its peak from 1984 to mid 1999 during the

military’s inglorious epoch. The Lagos School of Human Rights and

Democracy Free Speeches and Struggles contributed immensely and

pricelessly to the country’s advancements in democracy, human rights

and press freedoms with one of the arrowheads of the country’s dark

eras being the current President of Nigeria, Retired Major General

Muhammadu Buhari.
Sadly, the same Lagos School of Human Rights, Democracy and Press

Freedoms and Struggles has been conquered, annexed and transformed

into the country’s current epicentre of miseries, despotism and

democratic barbarism; with same the Lagos School leading the way as

its arch promoter, defender and advocate. What breeds and saddens our

heart most is not the collective decision of the Rights CSOs of Lagos

extraction to collapse and nail the internationally best practices of

human rights advocacy activities; but their refusal to leave the stage

and retire into permanence of politicking.
Attempts by the referenced to probate and reprobate or eat their cake

and have it, have resulted in brutal corruption and bastardization of

core human rights, democracy and justice values in Nigeria, to the

extent that heinous rights abusers are now labelled “international

human rights defenders”; with their image laundered nationally,

regionally and internationally on daily basis under what look like

executive scripted and oiled circumstances.
The tragedy that befell these dead rights CSOs started way back in

Lagos in the late 2000s through what some informed sources labelled

“Alausa Virus”, using the instrumentality of Lagos-CSO Liaison; a sort

of egoistic and materialistic partnership; which subsequently

collapsed the then mainstream Rights CSOs of Lagos extraction into “an

alliance of ACN and Rights CSOs”. It was from this that “grassroots

rights activism was abandoned” and “executive/laptop rights activism”

created and promoted; given birth to “CSO-INEC Engagement”; “APC-CSO

Opposition Consortium”; “APC-CSO Anti Corruption Consortium”,

“CSO-Legislative Engagement”; “CSO Election Situation Room”; to

mention but few.
While it is the constitutional right of any citizen or CSO to leave

the human rights advocacy stage and become a full-fledged politician

or political party; it is morally abominable for such a group or

citizen to be utterly paradoxical or maintain two contradictions at

the same time. That is to say that a promoter of human rights

abuse/abusers can never be a defender of human rights at the same

time; neither can a human parts dealer be admitted into a rights

community as a human rights defender. In Mathematics, one minus one

will always give a negative result.
It is therefore shocking, alarming and deafening that arch human

rights abuser with gross moral minus, in the person of Mr Ibrahim Magu

of the Nigeria Police Force; who is, unconstitutionally, the Acting

Chairman of Nigeria’s Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC);

is being labelled internationally as “a human rights defender”, by

some say; rights group, named “Socio-Economic Rights and

Accountability Project”.
The image laundering letter of “SERAP” to the United Nations Special

Rapportueur on the Situation of Human Rights Defenders, dated 16th of

December 2016; is also considered a grave insult on the person and

integrity of the Special Rapportueur, Mr. Michel Forst; as well as

collective image of the United Nations. The letter is dangerously

misleading, cancerous, politically and ill motivated and scripted.

The letter also clearly amounts to meddlesomeness in the

constitutional duties of the Senate of the Federal Republic of

Nigeria; to investigate, clear or reject any executive nominee for the

occupation of any of the Federal Executive bodies established under

Section 153 of the Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria

1999; as amended in 2011. The questions as: are there no limits to

renewal by the President, of executive appointments into

constitutionally established federal executive bodies under acting

capacity and when was Ibrahim Magu appointed as acting Chairman of

EFCC; do not border the authorities of “SERAP”. What despicably

matters to them is Mr Ibrahim Magu’s leprous baptism as “international

human rights defender”; against all odds and his motley of rights

abuses including long detention of suspects without trial and late

night invasion and violent arrest of the suspects in their sleep.

For the avoidance of doubt, we again invite all Nigerians and members

of the international community to read and analyse the authoritative

statement reproduced below, dated 1st of July 2016. It was exclusively

published by the News Express Online Media; owned by Mr. Isaac Umunna

who is also the chief media aide to late Prof Dora Akunyili and her

family till date. Prof Dora Akunyili was a former NAFDAC DG and

Minister of Communications. The authoritative statement has not been

credibly refuted by Federal Government and the authorities of EFCC

till date. The rejection by the Senate of the Federal Republic of

Nigeria, of Police Officer Ibrahim Magu as the substantive Chairman of

EFCC was substantially based on dubious circumstances surrounding his

multimillion naira rent payment to Akunyili family for their House,

located at No. 8B, Rudolf Close, Off Katsina Ala Crescent, Maitama

District in FCT, Abuja, Nigeria.
Acting Chairman of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission

(EFCC), Mr. Ibrahim Magu, has rented a mansion in the elitist Maitama

District of the Federal capital territory (FTC) Abuja, News Express

can report this morning. The storey building located at No. 8B, Rudolf

Close, off Katsina Ala Crescent, in the highbrow Maitama District, was

the abode of a former federal minister who died sometime in May 2014.

An impeccable source said: The property was rented to the Acting EFCC

Chairman for N40, 000,000 at N20, 000,000 per annum.

Furthermore, the Federal Capital Development Authority (FCDA)

curiously awarded a contract to Africa Energy, a company owned by Rtd

Air Comm. Umar Muhammad, to furnish the residence at the cost

N43,000,000, in a Government where the President is known to have

frowned at and rebuked his ministers for requesting N20,000,000 each

to secure accommodation and furnish them. It is shocking that the man

spearheading the anti-corruption crusade of the government will be

involved in such a venture. More surprising is the involvement of FCDA

in renting a house for EFCC and under what arrangement. News Express

made efforts to get the reaction of Magu and EFCC but the commission’s

spokesmen Osita Nwajah and Wilson Uwujaren did not respond to text

messages sent to them seeking their reaction to the story.

Today, through the magic of “APC-CSO Partnership”, sacred cows in the

so called “fight against corruption” abound. To be “Mr or Mrs Clean”

under Buhari Administration, you must belong or join the federally

ruling party and its “APC-CSO Consortium”. It is also an incontestable

fact that the present Buhari Administration and its “APC-CSO

Consortium” parades the highest number of doyens of corruption both in

its government and in the moribund Southwest CSOs’ circles. The rate

of aiding and abetting corruption and abuse of office under the Buhari

Administration has gone viral as well.
We therefore condemn in its totality the letter of “SERAP” and its

contents. It is our express call and advice to the United Nations

particularly its Special Rapportueur on the Situation of Human Rights

Defenders, Mr. Michel Forst, to tear the letter into pieces and delete

its delivery and documentation from its records. Such embarrassing

letters should at all times be declared dead on arrival!

We consider Police Officer Ibrahim Magu as is a serial human rights

abuser and constitutional violator. As a serving member of the Nigeria

Police Force alone; noted globally for its butchery and notorious

corruption records; Mr Magu can never be a human rights defender on

account of same; not to talk of his gross rights and constitutional

abuses as “acting head” of EFCC.
It is our strong advice to the moribund Rights CSOs and activists of

Southwest or Lagos extraction to courageously leave the stage and form

a political party so as to become full-fledged politicians. We invite

new breed rights activists and democracy promoters to join us in the

Southeast Nigeria which is now the epicentre of human rights and pro

democracy struggles in Nigeria.
The international community is called upon to take advocacy and

diplomatic notice of the rise of defenders and promoters of human

rights abusers and despotism in Nigeria, majorly concentrated in the

Southwest Region; who still go about parading themselves as “human

rights groups and activists”.
For: International Society for Civil Liberties & the Rule of Law (Intersociety)

Emeka Umeagbalasi, Board Chairman
Mobile Line: +2348174090052
Email: [email protected]
For: Southeast Based Coalition of Human Rights Organizations (SBCHROs)

1. Comrade Aloysius Attah (+2348035090548)
For: Civil Liberties Organization, Southeast Zone
2. Comrade Peter Onyegiri (+2347036892777)
For: Centre for Human Rights & Peace Advocacy
3. Comrade Samuel Njoku (+2348039444628)
For: Human Rights Organization of Nigeria
4. Engineer Rufus Duru (+2348037513519)
For: Global Rights & Development International
5. Comrade Chike Umeh ( +2348064869601)
For: Society Advocacy Watch Project
6. Obianuju Joy Igboeli, Esq. (+2348034186332)
For: Anambra Human Rights Forum
7. Comrade Alex Olisa(+2348034090410)
For: Southeast Good Governance Forum
8. Jerry Chukwuokoro, PhD (+2348035372962)
For: International Solidarity for Peace & Human Rights Initiative

9. Mr. Tochukwu Ezeoke (+447748612933)
For: Igbo Ekunie Initiative (Pan Igbo Rights Advocacy Group)

10. Comrade Vincent Ezekwume (+2348171793911)
For: Civil Liberties Organization, Anambra State Branch

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