Protesters order Amnesty International to leave Nigeria
The Nigerian branch of Amnesty International says it'll continue to battle human rights violations in the country despite sponsored protests against it.
The demonstrators staged a protest at the Maitama, Abuja office of the organisation on Friday, August 2, 2019 and condemned it for its attempts to destabilise the country.
The group said AI has been unfairly critical of the President Muhammadu Buhari-led government, alleging that the organisation is doing the bidding of the opposition.
In reaction to the protest, AI dismissed the allegations in a statement signed by its spokesperson in Nigeria, Isa Sanusi.
He said AI is a human rights organisation and not affiliated to any political, religious or commercial interests.
The statement read, "We have been working on Nigeria since 1967 – our role is to hold governments to their obligations to respect and protect human rights, and to ensure that anyone whose rights are violated has an effective remedy.
"For this reason, the organisation continues to call on the Nigerian government to use its authority and resources to investigate all allegations of human rights violations and abuses, including of rape, torture, arbitrary detentions and unlawful killings, to ensure reparation for the victims, to hold the perpetrators accountable, and to ensure non-repetition of the violations."
The group has been criticised in the past for being anti-government due to its constant criticism of the human rights abuses committed by the Nigerian government and security agencies.
On Thursday, August 1, President Buhari's media aide, Lauretta Onochie, called for an investigation into the activities of Amnesty Nigeria in a tweet.
She accused the organisation of working with the Indigenous People of Biafra (IPOB), a separatist group declared a terrorist group by the government in 2017.
"It's time for them to review the activities of those who claim to represent them in Nigeria. They have similar agenda as IPOB," she alleged.
The tweet was in reaction to Amnesty Nigeria's support for a planned revolution protest scheduled to take place nationwide on Monday, August 5.
Friday's protest to boot AI out of Nigeria is not the first of its kind as similar protests have been staged in the past.
Sanusi said the organisation will not stay silent despite the "sponsored protests" and that AI will continue to raise its voices whenever there are any violations of human rights in Nigeria.
JOIN OUR PULSE COMMUNITY!
Eyewitness? Submit your stories now via social or: