A group, the Northern Coalition for Democracy and Justice, has called for the prosecution of the presidential candidate of the All Progressives Congress, APC, at the International Criminal Court, ICC, The Hague for “orchestrating” the 2011 post-election violence in some parts of Northern of Nigeria.
The group, said to be a consortium
of 17 non-governmental organisations, operating primarily in the
Northern states of Nigeria, made the charge Thursday at a press briefing
in Abuja at the Transcorps Hilton Hotel, Abuja.
a statement read by its secretary for research and documentation,
Ibrahim Baba, the group said it was compelled to “sustain the process
for the prosecution of Mr. Buhari” which it claimed to have been
instituted at the The Hague in May 2011, “for his role that orchestrated
the 2011 post-election violence in some parts of the North.”
national interest “devoid of partisanship and political colouration”,
the group said it was important that “those responsible for the
premeditated arson, killings and destruction of properties” be brought
The group explained that recent provocative and
inciting statements by politicians ahead of the 2015 general elections
had influenced the renewed request for the ICC to urgently launch
criminal investigations against Mr. Buhari in order to checkmate a
reoccurrence of political violence.
While establishing grounds
for its call for the prosecution of Buhari, it said: “Similarly, we
recall that just before the 2011 general elections, the then
presidential candidate of the defunct Congress for Progressive Change,
Gen. Muhammadu Buhari had categorically directed crowds in Hausa
(language) at his campaign rallies in the north but particularly Minna,
Kaduna and Maiduguri to protect their votes at all cost including
killing and elimination of others.
“Like a nightmare, the spirit
of victims of 2011 post-election violence is resurrecting today at this
venue to re-echo the calls for justice and immediate prosecution of
those responsible for imposing tears, sorrow, blood and violence on
Nigerians in 2011.
“Another reason for institution of the case is
to compel the political class to imbibe the culture of winning election
through the sanctity of the ballot box devoid of intimidation, threat,
intolerance, hate messages, resorting to self-help and violence. We
remained concerned about gut-wrenching situation of people being
intimidated on account of exercising their political liberty, choices
and preferences. In the North, now, they attack supporters of a
particular party and candidate.”
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