KZakaa Lazarus, Abuja.
Coalition of Civil Society Organisations under the auspices of Nigeria mourns and Global Right, have expressed worry over the increasing spate of insecurity across the country.
The group also called on the Nigerian government to boldly invest in long term interventions that will end violence and all forms of atrocities in the country.
Addressing journalists at a press conference on Friday to commemorate the 2022 National Day of Mourning and Launch of 2021 Mass Atrocities Report and Documentary in Abuja, Global Rights’s Executive Director, Abiodun Baiyewu said the number of deaths associated with mass atrocities keeps increasing.
According to Abiodun, “The numbers for 2021are exponentially higher than the numbers for 2020.In 2021, our tracking double verified at least 6895 persons killed. In comparison, in 2020, at least 4556 persons were killed, while at least 3188 persons were killed in 2019, pointing to an exponential rise in mass atrocities across the country.
Baiyewu wondered how the masses would conveniently vote with the incessant crisis in almost every part of the country.
She also expressed fears that the political season could be bloody if nothing is done to tackle it.
“There are no signs of these numbers abating anytime soon, especially as Nigeria enters into its political season given its 2023 general elections which are expected to be highly contested and volatile as indicated by the number of politically related killings”, she noted.
Also speaking, Ogi Ladi, Program Director, Network of University Legal Aid Institutions (NULAI) Nigeria, urged government to check the spate of violence and proliferation of arms ahead of the forthcoming general elections.
“It is important to state that there are no silver bullets to ending Nigeria’s crisis of violence. There are also no quick fixes. The people and government of Nigeria will have to be deliberate and bravely commit to long term interventions to stem the tide” she added.
Executive Director, Civil Society Legislative Advocacy Centre (CISLAC), Auwal Rafsanjani task the Nigerian government to emulate other countries who took proactive measures to end violence in their countries.
He also called for the reform of the Nigeria’s security agencies.
Rafsanjani however urged Nigerians not to allow themselves to be used as political thugs by greedy politician the forthcoming general elections.