Non-profit organisation, the Socio-Economic Rights and Accountability Project, has condemned violent attacks on #RevolutionNow protesters in Abuja, Lagos, Osogbo and other parts of the country.
SERAP in a statement signed by its Deputy Director, Kolawole Oluwadare, asked the President Muhammadu Buhari to “end the use of excessive force against protesters, and allow people to peacefully exercise their human rights”.
It was earlier reported that several #RevolutionNow protesters were arrested by operatives of the State Security Service, the Nigeria Police Force and the Nigerian Army in different parts of the country where the demonstrations held on Wednesday.
The protesters carrying placards and banners had set out as early as 8 am to demand good governance.
Some of the banners read, ‘Nigerians are sick and tired of poverty, corruption, injustice and untimely death’; ‘Say no to injustice’, ‘Yes to living wage for unemployed youths’.
The statement titled, ‘Nigeria: SERAP condemns attacks on #RevolutionNow protesters’, partly read, “By failing to adequately protect protesters from violent attacks, Nigerian authorities have blatantly violated their obligations under the Nigerian Constitution of 1999 (as amended), the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights and the African Charter on Human and Peoples’ Rights to which Nigeria is a state party.
“Nobody should be arrested or subjected to torture and ill-treatment simply for taking part in peaceful protests. The authorities should stop criminalising peaceful protesters.”
“Rather than suppressing peaceful protests, the authorities ought to protect peaceful protesters and ensure a safe and enabling environment for people to exercise their constitutionally and internationally guaranteed rights to freedom of expression and peaceful assembly.”
SERAP urged “the authorities to immediately and unconditionally release all those arrested, promptly investigate attacks on protesters, and identify security agents suspected to be responsible and bring them to justice.”
It also called on the international community including the UN Human Rights Council, the Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights, the African Union and the African Commission on Human and Peoples’ Rights to publicly condemn the attacks on the protesters.
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