World Video | Defence | Foreign Affairs | Natural Events | Trade | NZ in World News | NZ National News Video | NZ Regional News | Search

 

Probe Arrest Bassey, Other Activists, ERA Tells FG

Probe Arrest Bassey, Other Activists, ERA Tells FG

The Environmental Rights Action/Friends of the Earth Nigeria (ERA/FoEN) has urged the Federal Government to investigate the unwarranted detention of ERA staff, including the executive director, Nnimmo Bassey and two Dutch parliamentarians by the Joint Military Task Force (JTF) on the Niger Delta, insisting that the action was a human right violation.

ERA Staff were on official assignment to a gas flare facility in the company of the foreign parliamentarians when they were accosted and subsequently detained by men of the JTF at Oben, a border town between Delta and Edo State on the allegation that they were on a clandestine mission.

Before they were released at about midnight (after seven hours), repeated appeals that their mission was totally in conformity with ERA’s monitoring activities fell on deaf ears as the JTF soldiers insisted the arrested ERA staff and the foreign nationals will only be released when such an order comes from their headquarters.

Reacting to the development, ERA Programmes Director, Godwin Ojo described the incident as “embarrassing and unfortunate”, saying the ugly incident was a sad reminder that the military is yet to wean itself of the siege mentality when dealing with civilians.
“This unwarranted action is a clear indication that the Niger Delta is still a militarised zone where people cannot move freely as enshrined in the Nigerian Constitution. The JTF must simply explain this action”

Ojo pointed out that the action of the JTF adds to a growing list of human rights violations the task force has been enmeshed in, in recent time, including the Odi massacre in 1999 and Ayakoromor bombing last month, which led to tens of deaths, loss of property and displacement of Ayakoromor community in Burutu Local Government Area of Delta State.

Ojo said the excesses of the JTF in recent time is a growing cause of concern, even as he added that the Federal Government has the responsibility of guaranteeing the military acts responsibly and respects the rights of not only the people of the Niger Delta, but also every Nigerian.

“We demand the immediate and unconditional release of ERA staff and the Dutch parliamentarians. This unwarranted action must be fully investigated and perpetrators brought to book. We also demand an unreserved apology from the JTF for the trauma that victims have passed through. Antything short of this is unacceptable,” Ojo noted.

ENDS

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
World Headlines

 

New IPCC Report: ‘Unprecedented Changes’ Needed To Limit Global Warming

Limiting global warming to 1.5°C will require “far-reaching and unprecedented changes,” such as ditching coal for electricity to slash carbon emissions, says a special report that finds some of the actions needed are already under way, but the world must move faster… More>>

ALSO:

Jamal Khashoggi: UK, France, Germany Join Calls For Credible Investigation

Germany, the United Kingdom and France share the grave concern expressed by others including HRVP Mogherini and UNSG Guterres, and are treating this incident with the utmost seriousness. More>>

ALSO:

MSF Not Wanted: Nauru Government Shows Continued Callousness

The Nauruan Government’s decision to ask Doctors Without Borders to immediately leave shows continued callousness towards asylum seekers desperately seeking a safe place to call home, Green MP Golriz Ghahraman said today. More>>

ALSO:

Sulawesi Quake, Tsunami: Aid Response Begins

Oxfam and its local partners are standing by to deploy emergency staff and resources to the Indonesian island of Sulawesi, as an estimated 1.5 million people are thought to be affected by the massive earthquake and tsunami that hit on Friday. More>>

ALSO:

Decriminalising Same-Sex Relationships: UN Rights Chief Applauds Indian Decision

“This is a great day for India and for all those who believe in the universality of human rights," Bachelet said. "With this landmark decision, the Indian Supreme Court has taken a big step forward for freedom and equality...” More>>

ALSO: