A prominent civil rights group, the Human Rights Writers Association of Nigeria (HURIWA), has commended the proactive measures taken by the Federal Minister of the Federal Capital Territory, Mr. Nyesom Wike, in addressing the rising insecurity in the nation’s capital. HURIWA expressed satisfaction with the government’s efforts to equip the police force and demolish illegal structures used by criminals as operational bases.
HURIWA praised the Inspector-General of Police, Mr. Kayode Egbetokun, for establishing a specialized outfit to combat kidnappings in the FCT. However, the organization raised concerns about the effectiveness of police prosecutions, citing instances where arrested kidnappers and terrorists were allegedly released without proper legal consequences.
The civil rights group challenged the police force to provide information on the whereabouts and legal status of over 1,000 kidnappers and terrorists paraded since 2015. HURIWA called on citizens to demand accountability and transparency from the police regarding the fate of these criminal suspects.
HURIWA also highlighted specific cases, including the 2016 arrest of suspects involved in the kidnap of Margret Emefiele, the wife of Nigeria’s Central Bank Governor. The organization pointed out that despite high-profile parades by the police, there is a lack of verifiable evidence regarding the prosecution and conviction of these criminals.
In response to the recent surge in kidnappings, the Nigeria Police, under the leadership of Mr. Kayode Egbetokun, paraded 29 suspects arrested in Bwari Area Council, one of the hotspots for kidnapping in Abuja. HURIWA acknowledged these efforts but cautioned against a mere media spectacle, emphasizing the need for sustained action and prevention of the rebuilding of demolished illegal structures.
HURIWA expressed worry over the alleged compromise within the police force, where criminals paraded publicly are said to be released without proper legal consequences, enabling them to return to criminal activities. The organization urged the Federal Capital Territory Administration, under Mr. Nyesom Wike, to maintain the ongoing measures, including the demolition of structures used by terrorists as operational bases.
In conclusion, HURIWA underscored the importance of accountability and transparency in law enforcement, emphasizing the need for citizens to actively question the police about the fate of arrested criminals. The organization called for sustained efforts to ensure the safety and security of residents in the Federal Capital Territory.