The Registered Trustees of the Socio-Economic Rights and Accountability Project have urged the Economic Community of West African States Court in Abuja to hold the Federal Government responsible for various violent incidents across the country leading to loss of property and human lives.
The plaintiffs accused the Federal Government of permitting human rights violations in form of killings, raping and maiming of citizens by violent herdsmen, military and police operatives because the Federal Government allegedly failed to address the situation.
The plaintiffs’ counsel, Mr. Femi Falana (SAN), who reportedly filed the suit marked ECW/CCJ/APP/15/16 on behalf of his client on Tuesday, alleged that the Federal Government had failed to prevent,investigate and prosecute perpetrators of human rights abuses including violent herdsmen and brutal police and military operatives.
Falana claimed that the alleged failure of the Federal Government to do due diligence in preventing, investigating and prosecution cases of rights abuses had occasioned a breach of the African Charter on Human and Peoples’ Rights.
According to Falana, the alleged failure of the Federal Government had also occasioned a breach of the provisions of the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights.
For these breaches, the plaintiffs are urging the ECOWAS Court to make an order compelling the Federal Government to wake up to its responsibilities and fulfill its obligation of securing the lives and property of its citizens.
The plaintiffs also want the ECOWAS Court to compel the Federal Government to pay N50m compensation to the dependants of each of the victims of violent killings by violent herdsmen and brutal police and military operatives.
They are also urging the ECOWAS Court to order the Federal Government to undertake measures that will forestall future recurrence of unlawful killings by herdsmen, police and military operative.
In the affidavit filed in support of the suit, the plaintiffs argued that the Federal Government ought to have known that there were immediate threat and should have taken preventive measures, which it allegedly failed to take, in all those cases of violent and unlawful killings by herdsmen, police and military operatives.