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Baga killings: NHRC sets up probe panel

The National Human Rights Commission, NHRC, yesterday, decried the increasing spate of human right violations across the country, just as it constituted a high powered investigative committee with a mandate to unravel those behind the alleged massacre of over 200 indigenes of Baga community in Borno State.

Chairman of the Governing Council of the NHRC, Professor Chidi Odinkalu while briefing newsmen after an emergency meeting the commission in Abuja yesterday, said that the committee would  among other things, “identify general or specific measures that may be taken to prevent a repeat of such incident.”

According to him “the NHRC met in an emergency session in response to alleged situations of serious human rights violations in different parts of Nigeria and the associated deterioration in humanitarian conditions, especially with reference to the situation in North-East Nigeria.

“Specifically, the Governing Council considered allegations arising from the recent incident involving the uniformed service  and alleged insurgents in Baga, Borno state.

“Following extensive deliberations, the Council formally resolved, in exercise of its responsibilities under section 5 and 6 of the NHRC Act, as amended, to undertake an independent investigation into the Baga incident in order to determine, among other things; (a) the specific and general circumstances, actors, and sequence of events that triggered the incident; (b) assess the state of humanitarian provisioning for communities affected by the on-going security situation in Baga and in North-East Nigeria; and (c ) identify general or specific measures that may be taken to prevent a repeat of such incident.”

“In setting out this statutory responsibility, the commission will undertake broad consultations with relevant agencies in the executive and legislative arms of government at the Federal, State and Local Government levels, as well as, the host or affected communities and civil society.’’



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