From Uche Uche, Damaturu
The Network of Yobe Civil Society Organisation, (NYSCO), Civil Liberty Organisation (CLO) and the Nigerian Bar Association (NBA) have condemned the killing of one Alhaji Zanna Musaby, by a soldier in Damaturu, Yobe state capital city, describing it as unjustifiable act of impunity and disrespect for the sanctity of human life.
The three bodies made the condemnation in press statement signed by chairmen of the respective bodies and made available to People’s Daily in Yobe, and copied to the state governor, Alh. (Dr.) Ibrahim Gaidam,the Nigeria Defence headquarters, Abuja, the Homan rights Commission, Abuja, the state police commissioner and the Commandant, 3rd Division Special operation, Damaturu.
The incident, according to the statement took place on Friday the 22nd August, 2014 at about 11.25 am, when a soldier manning a checkpoint shot and killed the deceased person.
According to the statement, the soldier shot at the car in which he, the deceased person ansd others were travelling in, from the rear after it was cleared and allowed to pass, adding that Doctor’s report confirmed that the man died from multiple gun shots at the posterior chest-wall which led to excess bleeding that subsequently caused the injured man’s death.
The three groups in the statement, while expressing their understanding of the difficult situation under which the security men operate, as well as appreciating the individual sacrifices the soldiers make towards restoring peace in the state, called the action extra-judicial, an unjustifiable act of impunity and disrespect to the sanctity of human life.
“We are seriously concerned with the conduct of the soldier whose primary responsibility is to protect life and wonder why he could cause the death of an innocent person that has not caused any danger to the soldier’s life, person close to him or the general public, by consciously terminating the deceased person’s life, end his aspirations and cause to his family and the good people of Yobe state such shocking sorrow and insecurity,” the statement said.
It argued that the rules of engagement, even under the state of emergency like is obtained in Yobe state, authorized an officer to use the arms only when it is clear that the life of the officer or that of his colleague and or any other person or persons nearby is threatened or endangered.
“While we regret our stand on extra judicial killing and violation of right to live, we urge the Defence headquarters, national human rights commission, Yobe state government and all agencies concerned in the matter to immediately constitute an investigation into the incident and give justice to late Alhaji Zanna Musa and his family whose right was violated,” the statement demands.
The statement also demanded that the culprit in this matter be brought to justice, and to thoroughly investigate the record of service of the soldier in question, and to ensure that reoccurrence of such incident is not only contained but to regulate the instinctive and unjustified acts by officers on duty.
“We also call on the Army, Federal government and the Yobe state government to duly compensate the family of the deceased person, Alhaji Zanna Musa to cushion the difficulty and sorrow of the family,” the statement added, while urging the good people of Yobe state to continue to support the security agencies in the fight against terrorism.