Amnesty International, AI, has decried what it described as the elusive accountability for human rights violation by Nigerian security agents and the terrorist Boko Haram sect against women, especially the internally Displaced Persons, IDPs.
AI, in a statement to newsmen by its media manager, Isa Sanusi, said although it welcomes Nigeria’s acceptance of recommendations by the United Nations Human Rights Council to intensify efforts to combat gender-based violence, that it remained concerned over what it described as “pervasive violence against women, including rape of women and girls in internally displaced persons camps, as well as sexual violence against female detainees by police, sometimes in order to extract confessions.”
The statement however said that the organization urges the government “to ensure that victims throughout the Federation can seek legal redress for gender-based violations, in line with the provisions of the Violence against Persons Prohibition, VAPP, Act of 2015.
AI however revealed that, while it is presenting the review to UN, that the UN’s Human Right Council has adopted the periodic review outcome on Nigeria.
According to it, “Human Rights Council adopts Universal Periodic Review outcome on Nigeria
Amnesty International welcomes Nigeria’s cooperation with the review process and its positive response to some of the recommendations made by other states in the UPR Working Group.
However, Amnesty International remains deeply concerned about pervasive violence against women, including rape of women and girls in internally displaced persons camps, as well as sexual violence against female detainees by police, sometimes in order to extract confessions.
These violations have continued, despite the passage of the Violence against Persons Prohibition (VAPP) Act in 2015.
While welcoming Nigeria’s acceptance of recommendations to intensify efforts to combat gender-based violence, the organization urges the government to ensure that victims throughout the Federation can seek legal redress for gender-based violations, in line with the provisions of the VAPP.
Since the beginning of the armed conflict in northeast Nigeria in 2009, Amnesty International has documented war crimes and other human rights abuses by Boko Haram and serious violations of international humanitarian and human rights law by the security forces, including arbitrary arrests, torture, enforced disappearances, unlawful killings and extrajudicial executions.
Amnesty International welcomes Nigeria’s acceptance of recommendations to conduct prompt, thorough and independent investigations into allegations of violations by government forces during counter-insurgency operations.
However, the organization remains concerned by the lack of accountability for crimes committed by Boko Haram, as well as by government forces in the fight against Boko Haram, and call on the government to ensure that the perpetrators are brought to justice in fair trials.
Several states called on Nigeria to strengthen the protection of the rights to freedom of expression, association and peaceful assembly. In order to promote these rights, Amnesty International recently launched a campaign on freedom of expression in Nigeria, calling on the government to ensure that journalists and other media professionals can operate without fear of arrests or other reprisals.”