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    April 30, 2020
    Health workers not adequately protected At least 40 health workers tested positive for COVID-19

    The Nigerian authorities must ensure that health workers in the frontline of COVID-19 response have access to the protective equipment they need, said Amnesty International Nigeria today marking International Workers Day.

    Brave health workers have been working in difficult conditions, providing health services in the fight against COVID-19. They face the risks of being exposed to the COVID-19 virus, stigmatization, separation from their families, mental health and other concerns.

    “Across Nigeria, health workers are facing extremely difficult and unsafe conditions of work, such as shortages of personal protective equipment, dilapidated and overstretched health facilities, unfair remuneration and harassment by security forces,” said Osai Ojigho Director Amnesty International Nigeria

    February 10, 2020

    In 2020 Shell will face unprecedented legal scrutiny over decades of human rights abuses in Nigeria, Amnesty International said today, as the oil giant braces itself for conclusions in a string of European court battles. Allegations range from complicity in unlawful executions to systemic pollution and environmental damage in the Niger Delta.

    Amnesty International has been researching Shell’s activities in the Niger Delta for more than 20 years, compiling compelling evidence of the company’s role in human rights abuses. In a report released today, the organization highlights the various cases that are finally putting Shell’s harmful operations in Nigeria on trial.

    November 26, 2019

    Omoyele Sowore and Agba Jalingo © Private

    DOWNLOAD PDF OF UA 164/19 HERE UPDATE of February 26, 2020: All are free on bail. The fabricated charges against them still stand but must be dropped.

    Nigerian authorities have imprisoned human rights defenders Omoyele Sowore and Olawale Bakare at the Department of State Services in Abuja, and Agba Jalingo in Calabar prison, southern Nigeria, since their arrests in August. They are facing trumped-up charges of treason because they demanded government accountability. The maximum penalty for the offence of treason is the death penalty. They must be released immediately and unconditionally.

    On 3 August 2019, armed officials from Nigeria’s Department of Security Services arrested Omoyele Sowore, a human rights activist and publisher for the online news agency Sahara Reporters, for planning a protest, tagged #RevolutionNow. The protest demanded good governance in Nigeria, which is considered by the government as an act of treason and a call for an undemocratic overthrow of government. 

    November 25, 2019
    Esther Kiobel with some of the 30,000 messages of solidarity from Amnesty supporters

    The Kiobel v Shell case resumed at The Hague on October 8, 2019 and for the first time heard accounts from individuals who accuse Shell of offering them bribes to give fake testimonies that led to the ‘Ogoni Nine’ being sentenced to death and executed in Nigeria.

    Three men claimed that Nigerian government officials and Shell staff offered them money and promises of jobs and houses to testify against the Ogoni Nine. They said that, together with other prosecution witnesses, they were asked to sign statements that had been prepared for them and instructed to make specific statements during the Ogoni Nine court hearing aimed at incriminating the men. Renowned activist Ken Saro-Wiwa, Barinem Kiobel and the others had been accused of involvement in the murder of four traditional rulers, who were opposed to Saro-Wiwa’s campaign against the oil industry.

    October 04, 2019
    Spokespeople available for interview

    A witness hearing examining Shell’s role in the execution of nine men in Nigeria in the 1990s is a key opportunity to hold the oil giant to account over its alleged complicity in human rights abuses, Amnesty International said.

    The Kiobel v Shell case resumes at The Hague on 8 October and will for the first time hear accounts from individuals who accuse Shell of offering them bribes to give fake testimonies that led to the ‘Ogoni Nine’ – who included Esther Kiobel’s husband – being sentenced to death and executed.   

    May 06, 2019
    Ruling on Shell a 'vital step towards justice' for Nigerian widows

    On May 1, the District Court of The Hague, Netherlands, issued an interim ruling in the case brought by Esther Kiobel and three other women with regard to Shell’s involvement in the unlawful arrest, detention and execution of their husbands by the Nigerian military.

    It ruled in favour of the plaintiffs: the court does have jurisdiction over the case and that this should not be time barred.

    The court also ruled that Shell should hand over some confidential internal documents to the plaintiffs’ lawyers, and that they would have the opportunity to examine witnesses. The court will address the substance of the case next.

    This decision marks a vital step towards justice for Esther and the others and sends important message to other victims around the world who are seeking to hold powerful corporations to account but struggle to access justice.

    May 01, 2019

    The District Court of The Hague today issued an interim ruling in the case brought by Esther Kiobel and three other women with regard to Shell’s involvement in the unlawful arrest, detention and execution of their husbands by the Nigerian military. It ruled in favour of the plaintiffs, that the court does have jurisdiction of the case and that this should not be time barred.

    The court also ruled that Shell should hand over some confidential internal documents to the plaintiffs’ lawyers, and that they would have the opportunity to examine witnesses.

    Mark Dummett, Amnesty International’s Head of Business and Human Rights, said:

    “This decision marks a vital step towards justice for Esther and the other plaintiffs. It also sets an important precedent for other victims around the world who are seeking to hold powerful corporations to account, and who struggle to access justice.

    “We salute Esther Kiobel, Victoria Bera, Blessing Eawo and Charity Levula. It’s only because of their courage and persistence that we’ve got this far.

    April 28, 2019

    An Amnesty International investigation has exposed sexual violence against children and women by security agents and inmates at two high-security prison facilities in Borno State, Nigeria.

    The harrowing violations took place at Maiduguri Maximum Security Prison and Giwa Barracks, where thousands of civilians arrested due to claimed links to the Boko Haram armed group are being held. Amnesty’s research also found that scores of children are being unlawfully detained alongside adults in Maiduguri prison.

    “This is another sad and disturbing case of human rights violations against civilians caught up in the Boko Haram crisis in Northeast Nigeria,” said Osai Ojigho, Amnesty International’s Nigeria Director.

    “It is inexcusable that children are subjected to such vile treatment under government care, and likewise it is intolerable that women are once again bearing the brunt of abuse by the Nigerian security forces that are meant to protect them.”

    Children detained and abused at Maiduguri Prison

    April 28, 2019

    A Dutch court will this week (Wednesday 1 May) rule on an historic case against Shell, in which the oil giant stands accused of instigating a raft of horrifying human rights violations committed by the Nigerian government against the Ogoni people.

    Esther Kiobel, Victoria Bera, Blessing Eawo and Charity Levula are suing Shell over what they say is its role in the unlawful arrest, detention and execution of their husbands by the Nigerian military, following a brutal crackdown on Ogoni protests against Shell’s devastating pollution of the region in the 1990s.

    “This decision will hopefully mark an important step towards justice for the Ogoni Nine,” said Mark Dummett, Head of Business and Human Rights at Amnesty International.

    “These women believe their husbands would still be alive today were it not for Shell’s relentless pursuit of profit, which encouraged the Nigerian government’s bloody crackdown on protesters even when it knew the human cost.

    April 01, 2019

    The Nigerian authorities must investigate the killing of a man shot dead by the notorious Special Anti-Robbery Squad (SARS) police unit while he was watching a televised football match in Lagos yesterday, Amnesty International said.

    Kolade Johnson was reportedly shot accidentally by officers from the Special Anti-Cultism Squad (SACS) – a branch of SARS – who had been pursuing another man at the football viewing centre.

    Amnesty International has documented a pattern of grave human rights violations carried out by SARS since 2016.

    “Kolade Johnson is the latest victim of the SARS police squad, which has become notorious for extrajudicial killings, torture and extortion,” said Osai Ojigho, Director of Amnesty International Nigeria. “This appears to be an unlawful killing which must be impartially and thoroughly investigated, with any officers suspected of criminal responsibility brought to justice in a fair trial before an ordinary civilian court.

    February 19, 2019

    Responding to today’s arrest of one of the leaders of the #ArewaMeToo movement, Maryam Aiwasu, who is pursuing justice for victims of sexual violence in Nigeria, Osai Ojigho Director Amnesty International said:

    “Authorities must immediately and unconditionally release Maryam Aiwasu who has done nothing more than speaking up for women’s rights. Her arrest appears to be an attempt to intimidate and harass both her and other women supporting #ArewaMeToo – a movement seeking justice for victims of sexual violence in Nigeria.

    “While arresting Maryam, the police attempted to gain access to her laptop and mobile phone by force; this is clearly an effort to access the sensitive evidence she and other human rights defenders have been gathering to seek justice for victims of sexual violence.

    February 14, 2019

    This week, a Dutch court in The Hague heard the first arguments in an historic case against Shell brought by Esther Kiobel, Victoria Bera, Blessing Eawo and Charity Levula. It was a long, challenging, emotional day.

    The hearing started with two powerful statements by Esther Kiobel and Victoria Bera. The widows’ lawyer claimed that Shell was instrumental to the human rights violations of the Ogoni people. They argued that: Shell requested the Nigerian regime to end the peaceful protests against its operations in Ogoniland; provided logistics as well as money to crash the demonstrations; and had a crucial role in the arrest, torture and execution of Ken Saro-Wiwa, Barinem Kiobel, Baribor Bera and the rest of the Ogoni 9.

    Shell challenged these allegations on procedural grounds/jurisdiction, stating that the case should be time barred and should belong to a Nigerian court rather than a Dutch one because the events took place long ago, in Nigeria.

    Esther Kiobel’s lawyer challenged these arguments, and asked the court to order the release of 1000 documents marked as confidential by Shell.

    February 12, 2019

    The Nigerian authorities must protect people from violence and ensure full respect for freedom of expression, peaceful assembly and association before, during and after the country’s upcoming general election, Amnesty International said ahead of the votes scheduled for 16 February and 2 March 2019.

    There have been several instances of violence at election campaign rallies in some states in recent months, including the deaths of four people in Kano state in clashes between rival political supporters in December 2018.

    “The election-related violence in states such as Kano, Kwara, Kogi, Rivers, Taraba and Bayelsa is deeply troubling and, if not urgently addressed, will undermine respect for human rights throughout the election period,” said Osai Ojigho, Director of Amnesty International Nigeria.

    “Amnesty International has received reports of supporters of some politicians violently targeting political opponents, real or perceived. The authorities must stamp out any potential impunity by ensuring these incidents are investigated and that those suspected to be responsible are brought to justice.”

    February 01, 2019

    At least 60 people were killed following the 28 January devastating Boko Haram attack on Rann, a border town in Borno state, northeast Nigeria, Amnesty International has confirmed.

    The organization also analyzed satellite imagery which shows hundreds of burned structures in the town. Many of the destroyed structures only date back to 2017, suggesting they were shelters for internally displaced people who came to Rann seeking protection.

    “We have now confirmed that this week’s attack on Rann was the deadliest yet by Boko Haram, killing at least 60 people. Using satellite imagery we have also been able to confirm the mass burning of structures as Boko Haram unleashed a massive assault on Rann, most of which is now destroyed,” said Osai Ojigho, Director of Amnesty International Nigeria.

    “This attack on civilians who have already been displaced by the bloody conflict may amount to possible war crime, and those responsible must be brought to justice. Disturbingly, witnesses told us that Nigerian soldiers abandoned their posts the day before the attack, demonstrating the authorities’ utter failure to protect civilians.”

    January 24, 2019
    Arrests of journalists generates a chilling effect of fear in the media At least 4 journalists arbitrarily detained last year Raiding of media organizations is increasing climate of fear

    The clampdown by Nigerian authorities on the press, including by raiding media organizations and arbitrarily detaining journalists, is having a chilling effect preventing people from freely expressing themselves, Amnesty International said today.

    In 2018, at least four journalists were arrested in Nigeria, double the number in 2017, the organization revealed as it launches “Press For Freedom” a campaign to support freedom of expression in Nigeria. In the first week of 2019 alone, security forces raided the Abuja and Maiduguri offices of the Daily Trust newspaper, arresting two reporters and confiscating computers and mobile phones.

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