The Chairman, National Human Rights Commission, Prof. Chidi Odinkalu, on Thursday in Kaduna, traced the activities of the outlawed sect, Boko Haram, to the 1986 parcel bomb episode that killed the Editor-in-Chief of Newswatch Magazine, Dele Giwa.
Odinkalu also decried what he regarded as democratisation of violence since the return to civilian rule in 1999.
He also lambasted former Borno State Governor, Senator Ali Modu Sheriff, whose state has been the hotbed of Boko Haram activities, for deliberately impoverishing the state by under-educating its citizens.
Delivering a keynote address at the inauguration of Moluma Yakubu Loma Centre for Medical Law and the MIVE Legals Matrimonial Centre, Kaduna, the NHRC boss noted that Boko Haram started its nefarious activities in 1986 under the military regime of General Ibrahim Babangida.
He said what became Boko Haram (terrorism) started as a state-sponsored group, noting that when a state sponsored the killing of its citizens, it lost the legitimacy as a government.
Odinkalu said, “Contrary to what people think, the phenomenon that has now become Boko Haram actually started in an Ikeja Street, on October 18, 1986. That day, the first Improvised Explosive Device, was used to blow up Dele Giwa. Everyone knew that it was a state-sponsored murder. That was the first time that an IED went off on Nigeria soil. Series of events would later lead to Boko Haram today.
“At that time, Gani Fawehinmi (now late) had the courage to challenge the state on that murder. But he was in turn persecuted until his death. The Police Officer, who was investigating the murder, was also killed in unexplained circumstances in Mokwa, in Niger State. He was the immediate Junior brother of the celebrated writer and critic, Tunji Dare.
“When a state sponsors the illegal murder of its citizens, it loses its legitimacy as a government. So today’s terrorism started as state sponsored.
“In its 2013 report, the Kabiru Turaki Report laid out starkly footprints of the extent to which the claim of the Nigerian state to a monopoly of violence is challenged.
“The democratised violence is the symptom that now defines most Nigeria’s underlying ailment.
“Take for example Borno State. Around December 14, 2006, the then Governor of Borno State, Ali Modu Sherif, in response to widespread criticism of his record or lack of it, as governor, declared, ‘A lot of falsehood has been published over the years in newspapers about my government. And I have never lost sleep over them because less than five per cent of Borno people can read what is written in newspaper”.
Unknown Gunmen Kill Ondo Traditional Ruler, Olufon Of Ifon
Oba Adegoke Adeusi, the Olufon of Ifon under Ose Local Government Area Ondo State, has been murdered by unknown gunmen suspected to be bandits.
Oba Adeusi was reportedly killed on Thursday evening at a spot around the Elegbeka axis of the town.
According to reports, the monarch was initially kidnapped before he was eventually killed.
The monarch reportedly died at the Federal Medical Centre in Owo, as a result of gunshots he sustained during the attack.
The Police Public Relations Officer in the state, Tee Leo-Ikoro, confirmed the incident to Channels Television.
Describing the event as an unfortunate one, the Police spokesman in the state also revealed that two people in the monarch’s convoy were kidnapped.
No Pardon For Rapists, Says Sanwo-Olu
Governor of Lagos State, Babajide Sanwo-Olu has expressed that there is no pardon for people indicted in reported cases of rape and gender-based violence.
The governor made this remark on Thursday when he received a 54-page compendium on Sexual and Gender-Based Violence compiled by the Stakeholders’ Committee set up by this wife, Dr. Ibijoke Sanwo-Olu.
The Committee was set up to give recommendations on how the fight against sexual and gender-based violence can be won.
Speaking at the occasion, Sanwo-Olu, restated his commitment to protecting the vulnerable demographics and getting justice for victims violated.
The governor said, “I am delighted by the work done by the Stakeholders’ Committee to bring attention to the problems facing voiceless adults and children in our society. Through your efforts, vulnerable people are building the courage to speak out on offences of sexual violence and heal their wounds.
“We will bring people, who have been perpetrating these crimes, knowingly or unknowingly, to book. We will ensure they never walk freely without the full wrath of the law brought upon them. It is part of our responsibility to ensure that the vulnerable members of our society have a voice and have access to where they can get justice when their rights are violated.”
Vendor’s Widow Disowns Family Over N500m Lawsuit Against Gbajabiamila
Josephine Okereke, wife of the Abuja-based vendor killed by a security aide of Femi Gbajabiamila, speaker of the house of representatives, has rejected the family’s demand of N500 million compensation.
Okereke while speaking to newsmen on Thursday stated that what she wants is justice for her late husband, and not the compensation being sought by his family.
Recall that some days ago, Ifeanyi, her husband, was shot by Abdullahi Hassan, a Department of State Services (DSS) operative attached to the speaker.
Days after the Speaker promised to ensure justice, the family of the slain vendor wrote the speaker, demanding a N500 million compensation.
Okereke, however, told journalists in Abuja that she was not privy to the N500 million compensation requested by the family.
“I was in my house when within 10 minutes my father-in-law came from Abia, he went out along with his other son and the next day I heard that my husband’s people are demanding N500 million as compensation,” she said.
“I was shocked and asked how will they be doing that and how will the speaker help the children again with such demand. All I want now is that the person that killed my husband to face justice.”
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