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Uwajumogu's fitness for cabinet divides rights groups

22 May 2015, 21:57

Lagos - Human rights organisations are divided over the fitness of outgoing Speaker of the Imo State House of Assembly, Benjamin Uwajumogu, to hold a ministerial post.

It was earlier reported the Youth for Human Rights Protection and Transparency Initiative (YARPTI), based on a complaint by an Owerri based activist and blogger, Ikenna Samuelson Iwuoha, had reportedly petitioned the President-elect, Muhammadu Buhari, urging him not to consider the outgoing speaker.

A number of allegations were leveled against the politician.

Late Friday, the Human Rights Writers Association (HURIWA) dismissed as substantially speculative and unsubstantiated, the allegations of fraud and ritual killings.

Also read: New envoys assured military upholds human rights

"The police authority in Imo State told us in black and white that there is no shred of evidence to support the sensational claims that the Imo State speaker is corrupt or is remotely connected to any established case of ritual killings in Imo State," said HURIWA National Coordinator, Emmanuel Onwubiko, who signed the statement alongside the National Director of Media Affairs, Zainab Yusuf

"We call for caution whilst we wait for the determination by a competent law enforcement body and the judicial institution of the allegations of fraud and/or involvement in ritual killings. As a human rights platform we believe in the principle of Rule of Law and Fair Hearing even as we are opposed to media trial of even the most high profile politically exposed persons."

The officials said they believed all Nigerian citizens irrespective of their status or class must enjoy all the fundamental rights enshrined in chapter four of the constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria.

"We must back our allegations with unassailable body of facts and figures so we are not seen as persons waging a political war of vendetta or blackmail". HURIWA endorsed Uwajumogu's prospects of a ministerial post.

"We are aware that the leader of the Imo State legislature actively supported the effort which culminated in the passage of the bill known as a law to prohibit baby racketeering through baby factory operations and every other arrangement by which babies are illegally transacted on, and other matters connected therewith." 

- CAJ News


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