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Taraba, Benue governors dragged to International Criminal Court over killings

9jahitplay news update

Taraba, Benue governors dragged to International Criminal Court over killings

Naija hit play

– A group has dragged the governor of Taraba state and Benue state to court over the killings in the state by suspected herdsmen
– The information officer for Initiative for Civil Rights Advancement in Nigeria (ICRAN) accused the governors of handling the crisis between farmers and herdsmen in the states poorly
– ICRAN in its petition urged the ICC to open an investigation on the accused persons according to Article 15 (1) of the Rome Statute
The governors of Taraba and Benue states, Darius Ishaku and Samuel Ortom have been dragged to the International Criminal Court (ICC) over the killings in their states.
The governors were taken to court by a civil society organisation, Initiative for Civil Rights Advancement in Nigeria (ICRAN), for handling the crisis between suspected herdsmen and farmers in the states.
ICRAN in a petition dated Tuesday, January 16, said it appears that so much stories are being cooked up and sold to security agencies and the media in Nigeria as to what must have prompted the gruesome killings.

The petition was signed by Yakubu Bulama the information officer for ICRAN and addressed to the office of Madame Fatou Bensouda, the prosecutor, ICC.
The group in its petition narrated events that led to the crisis along border axis of Taraba and Benue state.
The petition read in part: “Suffices to state that our policy evaluators who attended a security meeting in Makurdi, Benue State in the latter part of year 2017 can confirm that Governor Ortom warned the Nigeria Police Force to step aside and be ready to act as mere observers during the 2019 general elections as the Livestock Guards together with the Civilian Joint Task Force which he set up have been mandated to violently intimidate the opposition party out of the way so he can rig election for purposes of achieving his second term bid on the platform of the All Progressives Congress (APC).
He said the group is disenchanted that Governor Ortom who is the Chief Security Officer of Benue State saddled with the duty of protecting his people has abdicated his duty and failed in all ramifications to deliver the dividends of governance. He said the Governor Ortom has become so obsessed with the pursuit of his second term ambition that he now cares less about the security and welfare of Benue people, which Section 14 (2) (b) of the 1999 Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria (as amended) clearly made “the primary purpose of government.
It is safe to posit that the coordinated attacks launched by Fulani herdsmen on Benue indigenes this time around is centered on the selfish actions and inactions of Governor Ortom. The attacks have nothing to do with implementation of the Benue Anti-Open Grazing Law, 2017,” the petition added.

The group also prayed the ICC to open an investigation on the accused persons according to Article 15 (1) of the Rome Statute.
ICRAN also urged the ICC to formerly submit to the pre-trial chamber of the court a request for authorization of an investigation of the accused under Article 15 (3) of the Rome Statute.
The petition said: “That the ICC Prosecutor obtain International Arrest Warrants for the Accused from the ICC in accordance with Articles 58 (1) (a), 58 (1) (b) (i), 58 (1) (b) (ii) and 58 (1) (b) (iii) and proceed to arrest the Accused so they can face their trial.
That the ICC Prosecutor compels the Accused upon conviction to pay compensation to the victims of genocide at Guma and Logo Local Government Areas of Benue state as well as Mambilla Plateau in Sardauna local government area of Taraba state in the sum of $1,000,000,000 (One Billion US Dollars) each as punitive damages.
That the ICC Prosecutor compels the Federal Government of Nigeria to set up a Commission of Inquiry to investigate the allegations contained herein beyond the ongoing media charade calculated to deceive the general public.

That Governor Samuel Ortom and his Taraba state counterpart, Darius Dickson Ishaku be accordingly investigated and tried for abdication of duty and instigation of war crimes against humanity to serve as deterrence to other State Governors who are planning to arm local militias for purposes of the forthcoming 2019 General Elections or outright ethnic cleansing,” the petition added.

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