- Category: GENERAL
- Published on Saturday, 26 May 2012 22:07
- Written by Elombah.com
A recent report on Human Rights Practices compiled by the United States Bureau of Democracy, Human Rights and Labor, has indicted the entire Nigerian Institutions for corruption, election fraud and other irregularities; politically motivated and extrajudicial killings by security forces, including summary executions; breakdown of law
and order, human right violations, security force torture, rape, and other cruel, inhuman, or degrading treatment of prisoners, detainees, and criminal suspects.
The US report titled, “Department of State’s Country Reports on Human Rights Practices for 2011,” which was submitted to the US Congress last Thursday by the Secretary of State, Mrs. Hillary Clinton, also noted that the Nigerian judiciary is corrupt and “remained susceptible to pressure from the executive and the legislative branches, and the business sector.”
Below are the highlights of the report
INEC: International and domestic election observers considered the April 2011 presidential, gubernatorial, and legislative elections to be generally credible, orderly, and a substantial improvement over the flawed 2007 elections. However, there were reports of fraud and irregularities, including vote rigging and buying, under-age voting, ballot stuffing, and political violence.
Immediately following the presidential election, supporters of the opposition Congress for Progressive Change (CPC) candidate, Muhammadu Buhari, a northern Muslim, challenged the outcome of the election. Postelection violence in protest of Jonathan’s victory erupted in the north and in the Middle Belt States, directed towards local grievances and political targets, resulting in loss of lives, property damage, and restrictions of movement. The April 9 legislative elections produced major changes in the National Assembly, as only about one-third of the incumbents in both houses were reelected, and opposition parties gained many seats.
POLICE: “Police routinely stopped drivers who did not commit traffic infractions, refusing to allow them to continue until they paid bribes. The Office of the Inspector General of Police attempted to strengthen the Police Monitoring Unit, which was charged with visiting police stations to search officers for signs of accepting bribes; however, the unit remained ineffective and made no arrests by year’s end.”
NHRC: The reports of state or federal panels of inquiry investigating suspicious deaths remained unpublished. Citizens could report incidents of police corruption to the NHRC; however, the NHRC did not act on such complaints during the year, and no other mechanism existed to investigate security force abuse.”
EFCC: On Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC), the report stated that officials of the anti-corruption agency reportedly singled out political opponents of the governing party in their arrest and detention of state, local, and federal government officials on corruption charges during the year.
GOVERNMENT: Impunity was widespread at all levels of government. The government brought few persons to justice for abuses and corruption. “The law provides criminal penalties for official corruption; however, the government did not implement the law effectively, and officials frequently engaged in corrupt practices with impunity. Massive, widespread, and pervasive corruption affected all levels of government and the security forces. The constitution provides immunity from civil and criminal prosecution to the president, vice president, governors, and deputy governors while in office."
BOKO HARAM: The most serious human rights problems during the year were the abuses committed by the militant sect known as Boko Haram, which was responsible forkillings, bombings, and other attacks throughout the country, resulting in numerous deaths, injuries, and the widespread destruction of property; abuses committed by the security services with impunity, including killings, beatings, arbitrary detention, and destruction of property; and societal violence, including ethnic, regional, and religious violence.
KIDNAPPINGS: Continuing abductions of civilians by militant and criminal groups occurred in the Niger Delta, particularly in Port Harcourt (see section 1.g.). Other parts of the country also experienced a significant increase in abductions, some of which may have been politically motivated. On March 17, kidnappers abducted the 97-year-old mother of the PDP candidate for Delta Central senatorial district, Chief Ighoyota Amori. The kidnappers demanded that Amori either drop his bid for senate or pay 100 million naira ($617,000). On March 22, the Anti-Kidnapping Task Force of the Delta Waterways Security Committee freed Amori’s mother. Whether Chief Amori paid the ransom was not known.
Read the complete report here.