Human rights : Osinbajo inaugurates panel to ensure military's compliance

Osinbajo warns civil servants against corruption

Osinbajo warns civil servants against corruption

The panel inaugurated on Friday was set-up to "review compliance of Nigerian Military with Human Rights obligations", according to the Presidency.

He made the remarks Friday at the inauguration of the Presidential investigation panel to review compliance of the Armed forces with human rights obligations and rules of engagement at the Presidential Villa, Abuja.

The Amnesty International's 2016 reports on Nigeria allegedd that 240 people, including infants, died in military detention camps in the North East while 177 pro-Biafran agitators were allegedly extra-judicially killed in the same year.

"It is our belief, that if left unaddressed, these allegations are capable of undermining the good work of the men and women of the Armed Forces who have largely conducted themselves in a disciplined and professional manner". It is that failure of our justice system to adequately respond to crisis that is usually a recipe for greater conflict.

The panel is also mandated to investigate matters of conducts and discipline in the Armed Forces in local conflicts and insurgencies; recommend means of preventing violations of worldwide humanitarian and human rights law in conflict situations and make further recommendations in line with these terms of reference as may be deemed necessary. -Gen. Patrick Akem; Mr Wale Fapohunda; Mrs Hauwa Ibrahim; Mr Jibrin Ibrahim; Mr Abba Ambudashi Ibrahim; Mrs Ifeoma Nwakama as members while Dr Fatima Alkali will serve as counsel to the Panel.

Osinbajo expressed confidence that the Panel will also collect information about the conditions of service of the Armed Forces or any other factors that might have hindered the optimal performance of the Armed Forces in the fight against insurgents, militants and other combatants.

He called on all persons and or institutions affected or interested in one way or the other in any of the elaborate terms of reference given to the panel to seize the opportunity to present their grievances or cases or allegations and or defences, to enable the panel carry out very thorough review and investigations, in line with its mandate.

It will be recalled that the Nigerian Army in February 2017 set up a seven-member "Special Board of Inquiry" to probe alleged cases of human rights abuse level against its personnel in the ongoing counter-insurgency operations.

"This is why it is incumbent upon us even as we maintain security especially in conflict situations to interrogate, as we go along on a regular basis, alleged crimes and human rights abuses by all sides in these conflicts and insurgencies", he said.

The commission is headed by Justice Biobele Georgewill of the Port Harcourt division of the Court of Appeal.