Nigeria: Getting Killed For Reporting The Truth

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April 11, 2013: Christians are openly hostile to government proposals to offer amnesty to Boko Haram, in order to get a peace deal with the Islamic terrorist group. Many northern leaders have been urging the federal government to offer amnesty but admit that this alone is not likely to end the Islamic terrorism up there and increasingly in the Christian south. If there is amnesty, northern leaders feel they will be less vulnerable to personal attack. A growing number of assassination attacks are being made on Moslem leaders up north. Until recently the federal government opposed amnesty because they thought they had Boko Haram on the defensive and felt they could crush the group without any amnesty deals. Christians point out that three years of Boko Haram terrorism has destroyed over a thousand Christian businesses in the north, along with nearly a hundred churches. Christians want justice.

April 8, 2013: In the southeast (Anambra state) another man died because of dispute with neighboring Kogi state over where the border is. It’s a tribal dispute, as well as men from different tribes. Battles like this because of land or water disputes are common.

There are more dirty deeds in Anambra state. Back in January more than 30 bodies were found floating in a river. At first the bodies could not be identified and the police offered a reward of $32,000 for information on where the bodies came from. There had been no reports of mass killings in the area and it was eventually discovered that many of the 30 dead were local political activists who had disappeared over the last year and were believed being secretly held by police. The separatist (pro-Biafra) organization the dead men belonged to accused the police of kidnapping and questioning them via torture, then killing them and dumping the bodies into the river. The government denies everything but the police have been known to do this sort of thing. This is something the government is reluctant to investigate. 

In the north (Borno state) four men were killed by Boko Haram terrorists for operating non-religious educational programs. Boko Haram is very much against this sort of thing.

In the capital police questioned four journalists over a story in a major paper about how president Johnson was planning to disrupt the efforts of his opponents to defeat him. Some of the methods appeared to be of questionable legality. Publishing this sort of stuff was, for a long time, not done. Not because it was illegal but because it was understood that the offended politicians would get revenge, up to and including murder of the offending reporter. But the reform and anti-corruption movement that has been growing for over a decade has changed the rules. The risk of getting killed for reporting the truth is still around, however.

April 6, 2013: In the Niger Delta someone attacked a police detachment and killed nine of twelve officers. The police were assigned to protect the funeral of the mother of a former rebel leader who had accepted amnesty four years ago. But he had received death threats from former associates in the rebel movement who were still fighting the government and accusing those who accepted amnesty of being traitors. The rebels who made the threats are believed behind this attack, the worst against the police in the Niger Delta in a long time. The police were in a boat, on their way to their assignment, when they were ambushed.

There were two other violent incidents believed to be related to tribal feuds. In the north (Katsina state) armed men attacked a village on the border with Niger, burning four homes. The villagers fought back and killed four of the attackers. In central Nigeria (Plateau state) gunmen attacked a village and killed seven people.

April 5, 2013: In the north (Adamawa state) armed men attacked the home of the deputy state governor, killed two guards, and burned the place down. The attackers also killed eleven other people in the area and some of them were apparently sought out by name.

April 3, 2013: President Johnson has made a deal with northern leaders to allow amnesty to be offered to Boko Haram members in return for a peace deal that would end the terrorist violence of the Islamic radical group. 

 

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