by Dolapo Adelana
Hundreds of protesters on Monday barricaded the Abuja office of Amnesty International.
The protesters under the aegis of Global Peace and Rescue Initiative also have the organisation 24 hours to quit Nigeria.
The Executive Director of GOPRI, Melvin Ejeh, who led the protesters said, “If in the next 24 hours AI does not shut down its operations in Nigeria and leave the country” the organisation, as well as other Nigerians, shall begin a five-day #OccupyAmnestyInternational# protest as a first warning.
“We, therefore, use this opportunity to call on Nigerians to join the movement to get this evil out of our land before it plunges us into real war.”
According to Ejeh, AI’s recent report alleging human rights abuses by Nigerian security agencies have been condemned by organisations such as the National Human Rights Commission and the Global Amnesty Watch.
Ejeh said, “Previous calls by concerned groups for the government to kick AI out of Nigeria for the safety of citizens have gone unheeded. Unfortunately, if this organisation is allowed to continue carrying out its atrocities here in Nigeria it will destabilise Nigeria.
“Unlike our leaders, most of us do not have the resources to relocate our loved ones to other lands if AI succeeds in ruining this nation. Like the victims of AI’s operation in the Middle-East, we would be left without a country and we would not be welcomed in other nations. We will become mere footnotes in its next annual report since it stops showing interest in places it has successfully destroyed.”
Speaking further, he said a recent revelation by Haaretz, an Israeli newspaper, has indicated that the organisation was used as a front for Israel’s foreign ministry.
Haaretz reportedly said, “The documents reveal how some heads of Amnesty International Israel were allegedly in regular contact with the Foreign Ministry from the late 1960s to the mid -1970s, reporting on their activity in real time, consulting with officials and taking instructions from them.
“The Amnesty office in Israel received regular funds transferred through the Ministry of Foreign Affairs which reportedly included hundreds of Israeli pounds for flights abroad, per diem allowances, registration fees and dues payments to the organisation’s headquarters, according to the papers.”
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