Wednesday, 5 February 2020

Weapons used in Nigeria's Herder/Farmer Conflict linked to organised criminal networks- Report

"According to the December 2018 report from the rights group, Amnesty International, over 3,600 people have died in clashes between herders and farmers over the past three years in Nigeria. In the meantime the death toll is higher than the number of people who died from terror attacks by Boko-Haram..., The Nigerian authorities failure to investigate communal clashes and bring perpetrators to justice has fuelled a bloody escalation in the conflict between farmers and herders across the country"-DW
 A new report by Conflict Arm Research, UK , says Communities and armed groups engaged in Nigeria's herder-farmer conflicts use weapons derived from national, regional and transcontinental sources. The report identifies weapons diverted from state stockpiles across the sahel, and trafficked into Nigeria through long-range criminal networks. Furthermore, the report says; the herder-farmer conflict also involves weapons that match newly manufactured firearms from Turkey, which International criminal networks have smuggled in bulk to West Africa, making it possible for combatants to access ''relatively new weapons which arrive Nigeria thanks to the efforts of sophisticated transcontinental weapon traffickers". This is the first field based study of small arms and ammunition used by armed groups and communities in Northern Nigeria's herder-farmer conflicts. Click on this link to read the full report :  https://www.conflictarm.com/dispatches/nigerias-herder-farmer-conflict/  The herder-farmer clashes has contibuted to worsening security challenges in the country with the indigeneous population attributing it to ethnic cleansing and land-grabbing and accusing the federal government of inaction. There has been widespread call for the government to sack the current security chiefs due to lack of solutions to the persistence killings and kidnapping which has no correlation to herder-farmer confrontations.  According to Yakasai, an elder statesman and a founding member of Arewa Consultative Forum; "the current Service Chiefs have run out of ideas on how to resolve the current issues of insecurity in the country". He said, the president needs to change tactics and seek fresh hands that would help in bringing an end to issues of insecurity in the country. In his words; "The president's idea about insecurity has proved inadequate to deal with the threat to our lives and property and he should urgently change tactics and personnel in order to win the war against rising threats to the lives of Nigerians" Meanwhile the Senate and House of Representatives have passed a vote of no-confidence on the security agencies and the security architecture in the country which the president seems reluctant to restructure. Indigenous populations have expressed their desire to actively engage in the defence of their homelands and this is supported by a renowned human rights lawyer, Femi Falana, who has urged state governments which are not secured under the present political dispensation to set up state security agencies because the National Assembly has made laws for the establishment of other arms bearing institutions in the country. The federal government and the ruling party claims they are tackling insecurity despite the country ranking third on the 2019 Global Terrorism Index.  There is widespread belief that a recent high court ruling in favour of the Benue state government declaring RUGA settlement unlawful and unconstitutional could intensify renewed herders-farmers clashes across the states since the herders are uncompromising in accepting the ban on open grazing nationwide. The court order by Justice Olajuwon restraints the Attorney General of the federation and other agents of the federal government from making any attempt to allocate local and state lands to anyone for RUGA settlement in Benue state without the approval of the state Governor under Land Use Act of 1978. Benue state is one of hardest hit by the Fulani herdsmen opposed to the state's anti-grazing laws.

Uche Okeke

Monday, 3 February 2020

FULL VIDEO : Drama in Senate, As Abaribe Tells Buhari to Resign Over Ris...

To defeat terrorism, the answer lies with ''leadership, accountability and action". To defeat terrorism we need a new plan. In the words of Henry Miller, "what distinguishes the majority of men from the few is their ability to act according to their beliefs. The hero is he who raises himself above the crowd. To run with the herd and die with the herd is the natural animal instinct which men share with other beasts". Defeating the devastating scourge that threatens our collective well-being and future in our own country requires 'speaking out the whole truth and acting accordingly'. Freedom requires action not sycophantic praise singing. Senator Enyinnaya Abaribe is the people's hero. The development costs of insecurity in Nigeria is that both the population and the economy suffer as we are currently witnessing. The entire system has failed so something must be done about it. What's the point of politics if its not to guarantee citizens security and prosperity. Thinking needs to change.

Uche Okeke is the Founder of The LEAD Project Foundation.

Human Rights in Nigeria-Nigerian information minister: 'This government does not violate anybody...

Can Nigeria's human rights record be defended? According to Tim Sebastiab; "Evidence of wrong doing is so compelling" .Lai Mohammed, Nigeria's information minister faces Tim Sebastian.

Thursday, 30 January 2020

Nigerians react to transparency Intl's report on corruption index

Better information can lead to better political performance. " Those in power need to think more deeply and in new ways about the challenges they face. Ultimately, a government is judged on its actions, and its results. Anything which takes away from that goal is a misstep"-Eliot Wilson

Tuesday, 24 December 2019

State of Occupation-FULL VIDEO : South East Senators Protest against Multiple Roadblocks in ...

The Buhari administration since coming to power in 2015 has relentlessly pursued a ruthless policy of Exclusion, Exploitation and Expansionism treating the people of the South-East with distrust, perhaps percieved enemies. Beside running an ethnic and regional government, the South-East Nigeria has been subjected to routine heavy military and security presence despite the country's security challenges that is more prevalent in the Northern Nigeria.  By excluding the people of the South-East from the country's top security architecture, the people of the South-East view this as a bad omen. The level of atrocities and hardships their people encounter on a daily basis in the hands of security personnel manning these numerous check-points is horrendous and worrisome.  In the words of Mr Yinka Odumakin, Afenifere National Publicity Secretary; "It will only take a Nigerian that is naive to see the trend the Buhari's government is going as if the entire South is conquered territories of the President and the Fulani and this is very dangerous for the unity of the country". I think the current government in Nigeria has proven that Nigeria is not a united country and has strenghtened the case for regional autonomy/ethnic federalism. Ethnic/Regional autonomy remains the only solution in a climate of suspicion and even hatred as its the case for Nigeria. According to Gurr, 1993, etal, "exclusion or maltreatment of minorities explains ethnic groups' rebellions around the world". True federalism in Nigeria is long overdue. People should be given more 'leeway' to govern their own affairs and take their own destiny in their own hands. This is the only way to eradicate fears of invasion and colonisation with legalized occupation and its horrendous consequences of 'genocide, economic exploitation and moral decadence'. Lastly in the words of Benny Hinn, American Televangelist, "the notion that Nigeria is a united country has been proven to be false based on past and present realities facing the country. The country is not only divided along ethnic and religious lines but throwing religion into the mix makes the gulf even more wider. The Buhari administration since coming to power in 2015 has done more harm than good to the unity it says is non-negotiable"
Uche Okeke is the Founder of The LEAD Project Foundation. He lives in London.

Nigeria 2019: The Year in Photos

We have selected some images that offer a lens on 2019 . Out there, there was a history unfolding, the year 2020 should be a year of repentance and sober refelection for Nigeria. In the words of American Televangelist, Benny Hinn, "In today's Nigeria, the struggle isn't about ensuring good governance, but about religious domination. The Buhari administration since coming to power in 2015, has done more harm than good to the unity it says is non-negotiable", something must be done about it.
Mrs Salome Abuh was opposition PDP Women Leader Brutally murdered by political thugs in Kogi State Nigeria during the November 2019 Governorship Election in Nigeria. She was locked inside her house and set ablaze by the ruling APC political thugs. Photo: The News Chronicle.
Prince Deji Adeyanju, a rights activist was brutally attacked by pro-government supporters in Abuja Nigeria on Monday 23.12,2019, during a peaceful protest to demand the release of the US-based International Journalist, Omoyele Sowore. Photo: Legit
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Friday, 26 July 2019

New UK Prime Minister, Boris Johnson to back amnesty for undocumented immigrants

"It is absolutely true that I have raised it several times since I was in government. I must say it didn't receive an overwhelming endorsement from the previous Prime Minister when I put it to her when I raised it once in cabinet. We should look at it and the truth is the law already basically alows them an effective amnesty, that's basically where we have settled now"- Boris Johnson, UK Prime Minister.
The new UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson  has backed an amnesty for about half a million migrants who do not have proof of their right to stay in the UK. According to The Times Newspaper, the Prime Minister promised to look at the "economic advantages and disadvantages'' of a policy review for undocumented migrants who have been living and working in the UK for many years without being involved in any criminal activity. The new Prime Minister has also confirmed that he was scrapping Theresa May's pledge to cut net immigration to the ''tens of thousands", and would instead introduce an Australian style points based system.  In his words; "We know the difficulties that can be caused and we need to look at our arrangements for people who have lived and worked here for a long time unable to enter the economy, unable to participate properly or pay taxes without documents". The Prime Minister's official spokesman made clear that he was not interested in playing the ''numbers game'' and was instead focusing on controlling migration rather than limiting it. Meanwhile, the Prime Minister, Boris Johnson has pledged to give the 3.2 million EU nationals living in the UK 'absolute certainty' about their future and would guarantee their ability to remain in the UK after Brexit, while being ''tougher'' on those who abuse the system. Boris Johnson said that the legal position of undocumented migrants who have been living in the United Kingdom for years was ''anomalus'' and risked a repeat of the Windrush scandal.

Uche Okeke

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