A coalition of Human rights and Democracy organisations in the Southeast has condemned the level of carnage in the Southern part of Kaduna State, saying it has assumed the status of a state-aided genocide.
In a statement made available to The Guardian and signed by Emeka Umeagbalasi on behalf of the coalition’s leaders, including Intersociety, Civil Liberties Organisation, Igbo Ekunie Initiative (UK) and International Solidarity for Peace and Human Rights, Enugu, among others, the groups stated that under the international law, “the attacks, killings, looting, plundering and sexual violence are nothing short of jihadist genocide perpetrated under state cover and protection.”
The groups said they are saddened that the orgy of ethno-religious cleansing has been perpetrated and deepened, despite clear-cut provisions in the 1999 Constitution and numerous treaty laws signed and ratified by Nigeria, stressing that both Kaduna State governor and President Muhammadu Buhari swore to uphold the Constitution.
While condoling with the leaders of Adara Development Association, led by Mr. Awema Dio Maisamari and the Southern Kaduna Peoples Union (SOKAPU), led by Mr. Jonathan Asake, as well as the entire predominantly Christian communities in Kaduna State, the Southeast Based Coalition said time has come to expose the killings in their area in the past four months and three weeks.
The statement read in part: “The leaders of the Southeast based Coalition of Human Rights & Democracy Organisations (SBCHROs), a body of over 20 rights and democracy groups based in the Southeast part of old Eastern Nigeria, are strongly alerting the world, including Western democracies, local and international human rights organisations, internationally respected personalities and people of good conscience.
“We are concerned about the ceaseless, systematic and coordinated attacks on mostly indigenous Christian communities in Southern Kaduna, an area with seven Local Government Councils and not less than 67 registered ethnic nationalities. Our hearts are bleeding over combined and coordinated efforts by concerned state actors and Jihadist herdsmen to wipe out the indigenous peoples of Southern Kaduna. These, they anarchically seek to achieve through ethnoreligious cleansing of alarming apogee.
“We have watched with total dismay and deepest concerns the level of state conspiracy, cover and protection in the jihadist genocide in Southern part of the state. These are perpetrated with utter alacrity, because the perpetrators and their patrons must have concluded wrongly that with foisting of a mole at the Presidency of the International Criminal Court, their days for justice or accountability are totally sealed and never to come.”
The groups recalled how the Adara Community, “the group victim of the latest butchery, had on October 26, 2018, lost its Christian traditional ruler, HRH, the Agom Adara, Maiwada Galadima,” saying he was killed by his abductors seven days after his kidnap by suspected herdsmen.
“We, therefore, make bold to say and conclude that malicious state actors at federal and state levels in Nigeria are copying and replicating ‘the Omar Al-Bashir era Janjaweed jihadism and ethnic cleansing’ in Sudan; perpetrated grisly at ‘industrial scale’ in the country’s Darfur Region.
“The state actors’ conspiracy in the Southern Kaduna butcheries is circumstantially and vicariously depicted by their total inaction and nonchalance; to the extent that 50 persons were killed in the same area in the past two weeks, with the state actors, especially the Government of Kaduna State and the State Police Command and the military pretending as if nothing happened.”