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Ideas about ‘belonging’ lie behind conflict in Kaduna, Nigeria

5 November 2020 When I was seven years old, my family and I sought shelter at a military barracks of the Nigerian Defence Academy in Kaduna. This was in 1992, during the Zangon Kataf violence between the Christians and Muslims in my community. It was during that disturbing incident that I realised the complicated nature of social relationships among members of the …

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Fear dominates the lives of Nigerians: the consequences are dire

2 November 2020 Is Nigeria a failed state? Former president and would-be elder statesman Olusegun Obasanjo seems to think so… well, almost. On October 1, 2020 – the day Nigeria marked 60 years of independence from colonial rule – the former president claimed Nigeria is fast drifting toward a failed and badly divided state… Of course, Obasanjo’s statement is self-serving. The …

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Nigerian youth demand political reforms and end to police brutality

31 October 2020 President Muhammad Buhari’s appeal for protesters against the special anti-robbery police unit SARS to stop their demands for reform and work with the government is likely to be in vain. First of all, it was astounding that he failed to mention the dozen people who had died as a result of the weeks-long protests during his national broadcast. And there is …

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UK govt admits it trained Nigeria’s infamous SARS police unit

30 October 2020 The United Kingdom has acknowledged it provided training and equipment to a now-disbanded Nigerian law enforcement unit whose alleged abuses have sparked large protests in the African nation. The minister for Africa, James Duddridge, admitted that officers in Nigeria’s Special Anti-Robbery Squad (SARS) received instruction from UK officials between 2016-2020. An “End SARS” protest movement began in Nigeria in …

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Nigeria: Authorities must stop attempts to cover up Lekki Toll Gate massacre

28 October 2020 The Nigerian authorities’ must end their attempts to cover up the Lekki Toll Gate massacre, Amnesty International said, as it released a new timeline investigating the atrocity one week later. The timeline – available here – collates photographs and video footage to confirm that Nigerian Army vehicles left Bonny Camp, a military base approximately a seven-minute drive from the …

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Nigeria’s #EndSARS protest: De-escalate tensions, start deep police reform

28 October 2020 What began as an orderly demonstration against an abusive police squad has become a national crisis in Nigeria. To lower the temperature, the government needs to move quickly to investigate wrongdoing by security agencies, give victims the justice they deserve and initiate far-reaching police reforms.  Unprecedented protests against police brutality have spun into deadly clashes in several …

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