News

October 27, 2015

NBA slams FG over ‘shameful’ treatment of IDPs

NBA slams FG over ‘shameful’ treatment of IDPs

NIGERIAN RETURNEES FROM CAMEROUN RECEIVING THEIR MEAL AT THE NEMA TRANSIT CAMP IN ADAMAWA RED BRICK FACTORY IN MUBI ON SUNDAY.

By Bartholomew Madukwe

LAGOS—The Nigerian Bar Association, has said that the federal government should be ashamed at the manner Internally Displaced Persons, IDPs, in the country were treated.

NIGERIAN RETURNEES FROM CAMEROUN RECEIVING THEIR MEAL  AT THE NEMA TRANSIT CAMP IN ADAMAWA RED BRICK FACTORY IN MUBI ON SUNDAY.

FILE PHOTO: NIGERIAN RETURNEES FROM CAMEROUN RECEIVING THEIR MEAL AT THE NEMA TRANSIT CAMP IN ADAMAWA RED BRICK FACTORY IN MUBI ON SUNDAY.

Speaking at the 13th Anniversary/Annual Lecture of Crusade for Justice, Lagos, with the theme, “Restoring the Dignity of Man Through Positive Intellectual Interventionism,” former Lagos branch chairman of NBA, Mr Taiwo Taiwo, who represented the NBA President, Augustine Alegeh (SAN), lamented that he felt so disgusted during his visit to one of the camps of the IDPs.

He said: “The government of Nigeria should be ashamed at the way IDPs are treated, it goes to show how the government treats all of us. NBA visited the camps of the IDPs just in August and I felt so disgusted with the things I saw there. Infact, it is worst than our prisons.”

In his welcome address, the President/Founder of Crusade For Justice, Mr Richard Nwankwo, explained that the theme was chosen on the backdrop of the innumerable challenges the nation was facing and issues at the world stage.

Nwankwo pointed out that as part of Crusade For Justice give back to community project, they visited two institutions in furtherance of its annual charity visit.

According to him, during the prison visit, they resolved to provide free legal services to the voiceless in prison, while pastors and counsellors in the team were assigned to different inmates who were interviewed.

“We have set up a Prison Rescue Team to help deal with the human rights aspects of these challenges. We must not wait for some of these awaiting trial inmates to perish before redemption and succour get to them.

“Join this crusade and give back to our society in whatever little way you can because as the saying goes- if we all do a little, we can achieve a lot,” he added.
Nwankwo noted that more than half of the inmates interviewed were cases that emanated from the Special Armed Robbery Squad, SARS, Ikeja, Lagos.

“Still on Kirikiri, we noticed that some of the inamtes have been in detension since 2004, some since 2005, and many have been to court just once. Some have been in detention for longer periods than they would have spent if they were timeously charged and convicted,’’ he stated.

He made a clarion call for the police to be trained, retrained and educated, stressing that they (Police) created a bottleneck to instigate people to drive against the flow of traffic.

The first Speaker, Mr Charles Adeogun-Phillips, spoke on the title, “Checking the Scourge of Internally Displaced Persons, Economic and Political Refugees and Protection of their Fundamental Rights- the Options Open to a Responsive and Responsible Government”.

Speaking on the topic, “Oil & Gas Exploration and Prospecting in Nigeria, Due Process and its Abuse- An Overview” the second Speaker, Engr. Augustine Emelobe, asserted that the Oil and Gas industry in the country had not started because its other benefits were yet to be explored.

It was gathered that there are 3.3 million internally displaced persons in the country.