ECOWAS Court Issues Order To Nigerian Govt On Benue Killings

The Nigerian government has been asked to investigate and prosecute perpetrators of the January 2018 mass killings and destructions in some communities in Benue State.

This is according to an order by the Community Court of Justice, ECOWAS which stated that the federal government breached its obligation to investigate the human rights violations that occurred.

In a statement on Friday, the court said that a three-member panel handling the case also ordered the government to redress wrongs to the victims and provide preventive security arrangements to counter any future occurrence in the affected communities.

It said that the affected communities were Adai, Tse Agur, Mbaguene, Guma Local Government Areas of the State.

The statement read in part; “Suit No. ECW/CCJ/APP/16/18, the estates of Mbakpenu Zamber, Nyiev Bohemen, Simon Anyom, Yahuan Bohemen, Atorjime Timothy, Musega Mtagher and Pius Udughkyla.

“The next of kin of the deceased seven farmers; alleged the violation of their fundamental human rights and those of their late relatives, particularly the rights to life, dignity, peace, security and equality before the law.”

The court, however, rejected a request by the plaintiffs for an order compelling the government to pay a sum of N200 million to each of them as general damages.

“It also rejected the request of the plaintiffs for an order for the government to pay each of them the sum of N1 billion each as aggravated and punitive damages.”

The judgment was delivered by Justice Edward Asante, President of the court, Presiding, Justice Keikura Bangura, and Hon. Januaria Costa.

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