Amnesty International has expressed deep concern over the lack of progress on human rights under the administration of President Bola Tinubu so far.
Discussing on this year’s human rights day, the organization’s Country Director in Nigeria, Isa Sanusi, highlighted the government’s failure to investigate past human rights violations and its inadequate response to ongoing abuses.
In an interview with DW Hausa, Sanusi criticised the government’s reliance on issuing statements in response to such incidents, calling it a mere echo of the previous administration’s ineffective approach.
He said, “Honestly there is no any light, it is rather fear. Firstly, the current administration hasn’t shown any commitment to investigating past human rights abuses.
“Secondly, at the start of this administration, at least 200 people were killed, the government’s response to human rights violations under the current president mirrors the lackluster approach of the previous administration, relying solely on issuing statements. This lack of action fuels my pessimism regarding any meaningful progress.”
Sanusi further said Nigeria’s history bore the weight of human rights violations, from colonial rule to the Biafra War, with violations on the rise.
He added, “Many people fail to take legal action when their rights are violated. While seeking justice can be difficult and resource-intensive, it’s crucial to remember that we are ultimately responsible for fighting for our own rights, no one else will do it for us.
“It’s essential to stand up for ourselves. When a police officer or soldier abuses you, pursue all legal avenues to seek justice. Similarly, if a community’s rights are violated, the villagers should unite and seek legal action. Silence and the belief that justice is divine intervention embolden perpetrators. We must not allow this to continue.
“If someone goes to a village and kills 100 people, it’s imperative for the affected community to collectively approach the government house and demand justice. They should remain in the house until those responsible are held accountable.”