Global rights movement, Amnesty International (AI), has raised the alarm over “outright threats to the lives of its staff by a faceless and unknown group” and insists it will continue to speak up against injustice.
“Amnesty International draws the attention of the Nigerian authorities and the general public to the intimidation and outright threats of attacks that were issued against its staff, supporters, and premises by a faceless and unknown group at a press conference held on 4 November 2020,” the human rights group said in a statement.
“Similar faceless groups had previously invaded our office and given us an ultimatum to leave Nigeria,” it added.
ARISE News had reported how a group, the Centre for Africa Liberation and Socio-Economic Rights (CALSER) accused Amnesty International of facilitating the widespread looting and arson in Nigeria.
CALSER had given AI a seven-day ultimatum to leave the country, failing which offices of the rights group in Abuja and Lagos will witness an unprecedented level of civil disobedience.
The group had also threatened that AI’s “staffers will be treated the same way that innocent policemen lynched by mobs were treated.”
“Despite threats to our lives, through faceless organizations and sponsored protests, we will not stay silent. In the face of efforts to evade responsibility or to smear our organization, we will continue to raise our voices whenever and wherever we see injustice,” Amnesty International responded to the group in the statement on Friday.
AI in the statement noted that it was not affiliated to any government, ideology, or interest, and have been working in Nigeria since June 1967, and stated that “the Nigerian authorities owe a legal duty to ensure the protection of lives and properties of every person in the country.
“Malicious threats will not deter us from continuing to speak against human rights violations and abuses by state and non-state actors.”
By Abel Ejikeme