#HRC53 Request for an Independent Investigation into Reports of Genocidal Violence in Nigeria

4th July 2023 GENEVA, Switzerland – Jubilee Campaign and Stefanos Foundation address the Special Adviser to the Secretary General on the Prevention of Genocide, raising concerns about Nigeria

I thank you Special Adviser to the Secretary General on the Prevention of Genocide for your presentation and your report.

Good afternoon Ladies and gentlemen.

Nigeria is not at war yet, non-state actors and armed criminal gangs in Nigeria have sustained attacks on ethnic communities for over a decade.

The government have continued to label them as unknown gunmen and bandits as an excuse to not take decisive action and effective steps against them, resulting in increased impunity.

Therefore, the violence is encouraged to continue. The violence has taken a trend – the perpetrators are reported to be the same, the style of attacks are the same and the victims are being profiled on the same lines – ethnic minority indigenous [predominately Christian] communities in Nigeria.

The major impactful interventions so far have come from civil society. We therefore recommend:

  • Technological support to aid in an investigation not dependent of state actors to collect information across borders and analyse the root causes and sources of funding to these gangs as recommended by various UN Special Procedures.

Most of the IDP communities are presently occupied by the perpetrators. We therefore recommend that:

  • The government be adequately prepared to prioritise the recovery of occupied communities else they will serve as a launching pad for more attacks.

Finally, we recommend :

  • The removal of the threat of violence against minorities under the guise of blasphemy laws by repealing the unlawful sanction of the death penalty for blasphemy.

Thank you.

// Barr. Fatima Omotayo Njoku

Barr. Fatima Omotayo Njoku presenting the oral statement for Jubilee Campaign