A coalition of concerned Nigerians and a member of the United Kingdom House of Lords have petitioned the Chief Prosecutor, International Criminal Court (ICC), Hague, Netherlands, alleging “utter impunity and in fact reward for terrorism but deprivation and denial of justice for victims” by the Nigerian government.
They specifically raised alarm at the inability of the Nigerian government to adequately prosecute offenders of killings or restitute victims of the killings and other forms of violence.
They also stated that since the “Fulani Herdsmen killings” started, “there have been no arrests and prosecutions despite thousands killed. Not since 2010 when Killer Fulani Herdsmen were imprisoned for the Dogo Nawaha massacre in Plateau state has anyone been convicted.”
A group of Nigerians in Diaspora originally signed the petititon, prominent among them is Emmanuel Ogebe, Special Counsel and leaders of the organisations, Justice for Jos Project and U.S. Nigerian Law Group based in Washington DC.
Nigerians living the homeland later joined them. Ms Caroline Anne Cox, Baroness Cox, a cross-bench member of the British House of Lords and founder, CEO of Humanitarian Aid Relief Trust, also signed the petition.
The coalition in its petition regretted that despite all the genocidal killings in Nigeria, the ICC Chief Prosecutor “has not identified and declared perpetrators of the terrorist genocide in Nigeria wanted as you continue an endless “preliminary examination” while atrocities continue on a daily basis.”
They therefore urged the ICC Chief Prosecutor to make a determination that “Nigeria has failed the complementarity test and has not adequately addressed these crimes against humanity in domestic courts; that Nigeria’s mass release of Boko Haram suspects has actually engendered impunity and endangered communities further and that Nigeria’s failure to prosecute Fulani killer Herdsmen is implicit support and or enabling of their genocidal actions given Buhari’s own Fulani antecedents and activism.”
The full letter reads:
Hon. Fatou Bensouda
The Chief Prosecutor International Criminal Court
Dear Madam Prosecutor,
ICC IS FAILING NIGERIA: ACT AGAINST GENOCIDE NOW!
Firstly we wish to commend you for certain positive developments including the capture of a wanted genocide fugitive and the potential extradition of the former Sudanese leader El Bashir who has evaded arrest under international warrant for years. As Dr Martin Luther King said, “the arc of the universe is long but it tends towards justice.”
While these are commendable and highly historic hallmarks in your tenure, Madame Prosecutor, the fact is that history will find you culpable for your signal failure and inaction on Nigeria. It is said that history may forgive a leader’s actions but it won’t forgive their inactions.
Madame prosecutor, in the space of a week the people of Southern Kaduna experienced a devastating series of attacks in Nigeria’s pernicious mid-grade genocide.
For your information, here are just some of the atrocities:
– Zipak, a semi-urban town in Fanstwam Chiefdom, Jemaa LGA in Southern Kaduna, suffered the killing of 10 people when the Fulani militia attacked at 7pm, Friday, 24th July, 2020.
Though Zipak is just about two kilometers from the heart of Kafanchan where there is presence of a cantonment of the Army, Police and Paramilitary units, the attacking Militia had a field day.
After looting and vandalising the town, they burnt down part of it and gruesomely murdered the following:
1) Joel Cephas, 5 yrs
2) Kingsley Raphael, 28
3) Katung kantiock 60
4) Luka Garba 75
5) Victor Ishaya 22
6) Madam Dakaci 52
7) Kuyet Yayock 25
8) Cecelia Audu 65
9) Matina Dauda 70
10) Yanasan Dauda 70
– The Governor of Kaduna state immediately imposed a 24 hour curfew over the entire Jemmaa LGA.
However it was under the curfew that the Fulani militia returned on July 25th , to wreak more havoc on the community still in shock and mourning from the previous day’s massacre.
– Also, as it rained around 8pm, Thursday, 23rd July 2020 at Agwala Magayaki of Doka Avong, Kajuru LGA in Southern Kaduna, armed Fulani militia took advantage of the darkness and torrential rain and attacked the village for the second time in a month, leaving 7 persons dead
Those killed in Kajuru are:
1.John Mallam, 80;
2.Albarka Mallam, 85; 3.Jumare Sule, 76.
4. Hannatu Garba 55;
5. Thaddeus Albarka, 32
6. Luvinus Danmori, 52
7. Daniel Mukadas,70.
– It could be recalled that on the 20th June, 2020, the same village was invaded by the Fulani militia, some known by the villagers, and 7 persons were killed.
– On the 22nd of July 2020, as it rained on Kizachi in Chawai chiefdom, Kauru LGA in Southern Kaduna, Fulani militia broke into homes, and attacked villagers with knives, daggers and matchetes.
The following people were killed:
1) Kefas Monday, 17yrs
2) Lydia Monday,.14yrs
3) Jummai, 9yrs
4) Giwa Thomas,.14yrs
5) Living Yohanna, 27yrs.
This brings to a total of 23, harmless Southern Kaduna natives killed by Fulani in 72 hours.
– This is apart from over 40 murdered victims of Fulani militia in Kaura and Zangon Kataf, also in Southern Kaduna days earlier.
Community leaders stated that:
“These and several others have created a humanitarian crisis in Chikun, Zangon Kataf, Kaura and Kajuru LGAs as thousands of IDPs can barely survive hunger, sickness and various trauma.
It is therefore totally untrue that the mass murder of our people is an outcome of clashes between criminal gangs as portrayed by President Mohammed Buhari, through his Spokesman, Shehu Garba.
Our victims are not members of criminal gangs, but mostly kids, women and the aged.
The so-called formidable security arrangement he claimed to be in place in Southern Kaduna is at best, a ruse and a mirage, going by increasing casualties and the impunity of the Fulani armed men.
We are under a genocidal campaign by Fulani Militia, who have become sacred cows with President Buhari and Governor Nasir El-rufai, who are both Fulani, twisting the truth to say the Fulani are on “reprisals.” “
National Public Relations Officer
SOUTHERN KADUNA PEOPLES UNION (SOKAPU)
PRESS STATEMENT (25th July, 2020)
– On Monday and Tuesday, July 20th and 21st, at least 32 persons were killed by bandits in separate attacks in the state: 21 persons were brutally killed in Kukum Daji village in Kaura Local Government Area,
– 11 persons were slaughtered in Gora Gan village of Zango Kataf Local Government Area of the state.
– in a renewed attack, gunmen killed a village head and nine other natives of Gora Gan village in Zango-Kataf Local Government Area of Kaduna State.A six-year-old boy was also not spared by the blood-thirsty elements during the attack in which many other villagers sustained injuries, while houses were burnt.
– On Sunday July 19 President of the Community’s Development Association, Mr. Yashen Titus, said his people were shot dead after a wedding celebration in the community. He added: “The attackers stormed the village at exactly 10:35. They were heavily armed and started shooting sporadically at the villagers. They shot people celebrating a wedding ceremony. “In the event, 17 people died instantly from gunshots, 32 other people who sustained various degrees of injury were rushed to the hospitals; but unfortunately, two of them died in the hospital. “As I speak, some of the villagers are still missing and we don’t know their state. We cannot even search deep into the bush because security agents have not been deployed to the community yet.” All the above attacks were against Christian communities in southern Kaduna state.
– in neighboring Katsina state, also in northwest Nigeria, no fewer than 40 innocent children, officers and men of the military were slain on Saturday July 18, 2020. 11 children in Yammama Village, Malumfashi Local Government Area of the state, were fiddling with what they innocently thought to be toys, when the grenades they found in a farm they were cutting grasses to feed domestic animals exploded in their faces. Six of them, including five from the same parent, died on the spot about 11.30am.
– 16 Nigerian soldiers and officers lost their lives in Jibia axis of the state. The troops were advancing in Shimfida Village of Jibia Local Government Area when they were ambushed by dare-devil gunmen at about 6.13pm.
Apart from the atrocities of the killer Herdsmen in Nigeria’s northwest , terror group Boko Haram struck in the northeast as well:
– On Wednesday July 22nd Nigeria has cemented it’s record as a graveyard for aid-workers with Boko Haram’s release of another execution video. The latest executions of five, maintain the statistics of one aidworker killed every quarter for the last 10 years straight – a factoid of grave concern for international protected persons. Luka Philibus was a 30 year old employee of an NGO. He was a member og EYN church (which has lost over 10,000 members to terrorism). He and his family have been displaced from their community in Gwoza Borno State for six years (12 brothers and sisters and aged parents). Luka began working for the NGO just last year. This is not the first time staff of the NGO have been abducted. Luka lasted seven weeks in captivity.
Abdurhaman Bulama was also an Aidworker. Married with two children, his hospitality was legendary.
A fellow Aidworker said that “Abdulrhaman was a great guy. He even brought his wife to visit us in Maiduguri. I have visited almost everywhere in Northern Borno, from Dikwa, Marte, Gamboru-Ngala, Baga, Gozamala, Abadam, Ngazai, Gubio etc and have met so many people, but Mr Bulama is exceptional. He was a man you can count on any time. He was kidnapped by ISWAP on the 1st of June on his way to his hometown Monguno but never returned. He was a man of his words. I am so sad that Mr Abdulrhaman is amongst those Humanitarian Aide Workers cruelly assassinated by Boko Haram Terrorist group.” Bulama was Muslim.
Yakubu Ishaya Chirama is believed to be one of reportedly two men from Chibok who were amongst those executed. They were Christians.
It is to be noted that although Boko Haram’s stated objective is the extermination of Christianity, western democracy and imposition of an islamist theocracy, Muslims are often collateral victims of the genocidal terrorism and Muslim government workers are subject to execution as well.
The execution video came days after the multiple bloody massacres in Kaduna which were also religious-based attacks. This compelling video from Southern Kaduna drives home the urgency of action to stem the genocide.
Furthermore a former Attorney General of Kaduna state warned:
“my hometown Kagoro in Kaura LGA Kaduna State was attacked in another orgy of violence by agents of death and destruction. In the attack on Kukum Daji in my Village of Kukum, 16 people were killed and about 40 injured. I have confirmed that at least two of the victims are family members. Whatever their motive, they didn’t spare women and children. From the trend of killings in the Northwest, it is clear that government cannot fulfill it’s obligation of providing security or protecting the people. I have held this position prior to the coming in of this administration, things have only got worse as the perpetrators seem emboldened by today’s leadership. I have said so before and I repeat it again. Since the government has failed to protect the people, government should allow the people the right to bear arms in order to protect their lives and property. The marauders will feel less emboldened when they know that the people can fight back. The right to self defense is guaranteed in the Constitution, it must be given teeth by the further right to bear arms, not to attack others but to defend and fight back when attacked. Anger is boiling all over the country and very soon government will loose all legitimacy as people may be forced to take their own fate in their hands. No telling where the ensuring conflagration will lead us”.
Madame Prosecutor, you have dragged your feet on genocide in Nigeria for too long.
Till this date, your office has not identified and declared perpetrators of the terrorist genocide in Nigeria wanted as you continue an endless “preliminary examination” while atrocities continue on a daily basis as illustrated above.
Nigeria has failed to adequately prosecute offenders or restitute victims. The same week of these atrocities, the government of Mjr Gen. Buhari “reintegrated” 602 Boko Haram Terrorists and paid each N20,000, brand new clothes etc.
However their victims are in wretched IDP camps, dying of malnutrition, suffering rape by camp officials and children being trafficked.
Worse of all IDPs like Luka who found a job helping victims was executed by the terrorists.
Shockingly, military whistle blowers have lamented that rehabilitated terrorists are rejoining Boko Haram. There is utter impunity and in fact reward for terrorism but deprivation and denial of justice for victims.
With regard to Fulani Herdsmen killings, there have been no arrests and prosecutions despite thousands killed. Not since 2010 when Killer Fulani Herdsmen were imprisoned for the Dogo Nawaha massacre in Plateau state has anyone been convicted.
We urge you therefore to make a determination that
-Nigeria has failed the complementarity test and has not adequately addressed these crimes against humanity in domestic courts;
– that Nigeria’s mass release of Boko Haram suspects has actually engendered impunity and endangered communities further and
-that Nigeria’s failure to prosecute Fulani killer Herdsmen is implicit support and or enabling of their genocidal actions given Buhari’s own Fulani antecedents and activism.
Attached are pictures and additional reports from a local NGO. https://www.facebook.com/100005842232519/posts/1367138386824223/?d=n
Rev Polycarp Gbaja
Tolulope Omole, New York
M O ROSANWO
The Baroness Cox
London, United Kingdom
Emmanuel Ogebe, ESQ
Justice for Jos Project
US NIGERIA LAW GROUP
Seeking to end impunity in the Nigerian Genocide
Additional Signatories from Nigeria
Fr Atta Barkindo, Adamawa State
Pastor E. Ibanga
C.A Adisa, MD.
A. Basuo, ESQ.
J. Madaki, ESQ.