News / Africa

Nigerian Human Rights Group: At Least 500 Killed in Post-Election Violence

A soldier searches a car in Kaduna, Nigeria, April 21, 2011
A soldier searches a car in Kaduna, Nigeria, April 21, 2011

A Nigerian human rights group announced Sunday that at least 500 people were killed in violence that followed last week's election of President Goodluck Jonathan. Relief officials say more than 65,000 people have been displaced.

The Civil Rights Congress of Nigeria says most of the deaths occurred in northern states where Muslim supporters of defeated presidential candidate Muhammadu Buhari attacked churches, homes and police stations, sparking reprisal attacks by Christians.

Nigerian authorities are refusing to release details of the violence, fearing that it could lead to more rioting ahead of gubernatorial elections this week.

Nigeria's Emergency Management Agency says Kano, Kaduna, Bauchi, Adamawa, Niger and Katsina states were the hardest hit.  Director General Mohammed Sani Sidi says his agency is helping more than 21,000 displaced civilians in Kano and nearly 10,000 displaced civilians in Zaria as well as people at more than 100 camps for displaced civilians in Kaduna.

"The intervention is continuing.  We are not going to stop until we get this relief material across to all the victims that have been affected.  We are doing everything possible in collaboration with the Nigerian army who have been very, very active and supportive in providing us with security cover," he said.

Sidi says the distribution of relief supplies has been slowed by the difficulty of finding drivers who are willing to enter areas where there has been violence.

In addition to displaced civilians in the north, Sidi says there are people who are originally from the north and are now living in the south who have taken refugee with security forces following the violence. "Most especially in Anambra and Imo, we have people from northern origin who, out of panic, on their own have decided to move to either military barracks or police barracks for safety for fear of reprisal attacks.  Those people also we have been able to reach out to them and provide some kind of relief material to them," he said.

With more than 65,000 civilians displaced nationwide, Sidi says the only real answer is finishing this series of elections with peaceful state-wide voting to restore order. "What we are trying to achieve is to make sure that peace is maintained and restored in all these places so that people can go back to their various houses and the continue with their normal lives," he said.

Twenty-six of Nigeria's 36 states are scheduled to hold state-wide elections on Tuesday.  Voting in Kaduna and Bauchi has been delayed until Thursday.  Electoral commission chief Attahiru Jega says he hopes that will allow for the "further cooling of tempers and for the security situation in those states to continue to improve."

You May Like

Ebola Death Toll Nears 5,000 as Virus Advances

West Africa bears heaviest burden; Mali toddler’s death raises new fears More

Jordan’s Battle With Islamic State Militants Carries Domestic Risks

Despite Western concerns that IS militants are preparing a Jordanian offensive, analysts call the kingdom's solid intel a strong deterrent More

Asian-Americans Assume Office in Record Numbers

Steadily deepening engagement in local politics pays off for politicians like Chinese-American Judy Chu More

This forum has been closed.
Comments
     
There are no comments in this forum. Be first and add one

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Talks to Resume on Winter Gas for Ukrainei
X
Al Pessin
October 25, 2014 4:21 PM
Ukrainian and Russian officials will meet again next week in an effort to settle their dispute over natural gas supplies that threatens to leave Ukraine short of heating fuel for the coming winter. VOA’s Al Pessin reports from London the dispute is complex, and has both economic and geopolitical dimensions.
Video

Video Talks to Resume on Winter Gas for Ukraine

Ukrainian and Russian officials will meet again next week in an effort to settle their dispute over natural gas supplies that threatens to leave Ukraine short of heating fuel for the coming winter. VOA’s Al Pessin reports from London the dispute is complex, and has both economic and geopolitical dimensions.
Video

Video Smugglers Offer Cheap Passage From Turkey to Syria

Smugglers in Turkey offer a relatively cheap passage across the border into Syria. Ankara has stepped up efforts to stem the flow of foreign fighters who want to join Islamic State militants fighting for control of the Syrian border city of Kobani. But porous borders and border guards who can be bribed make illegal border crossings quite easy. Zlatica Hoke has more.
Video

Video Comanche Chief Quanah Parker’s Century-Old House Falling Apart

One of the most fascinating people in U.S. history was Quanah Parker, the last chief of the American Indian tribe, the Comanche. He was the son of a Comanche warrior and a white woman who had been captured by the Indians. Parker was a fierce warrior until 1875 when he led his people to Fort Sill, Oklahoma, and took on a new, peaceful life. As VOA’s Greg Flakus reports from Cache, Oklahoma, Quanah’s image remains strong among his people, but part of his heritage is in danger of disappearing.
Video

Video China Political Meeting Seeks to Improve Rule of Law

China’s communist leaders will host a top level political meeting this week, called the Fourth Plenum, and for the first time in the party’s history, rule of law will be a key item on the agenda. Analysts and Chinese media reports say the meetings could see the approval of long-awaited measures aimed at giving courts more independence and include steps to enhance an already aggressive and high-reaching anti-corruption drive. VOA’s Bill Ide has more from Beijing.
Video

Video After Decades of Pressure, Luxembourg Drops Bank Secrecy Rules

European Union finance ministers have reached a breakthrough agreement that will make it more difficult for tax cheats to hide their money. The new legislation, which had been blocked for years by countries with a reputation as tax havens, was approved last week after Luxembourg and Austria agreed to lift their vetoes. But as Mil Arcega reports, it doesn’t mean tax cheats have run out of places to keep their money hidden.
Video

Video Kobani Refugees Welcome, Turkey Criticizes, US Airdrop

Residents of Kobani in northern Syria have welcomed the airdrop of weapons, ammunition and medicine to Kurdish militia who are resisting the seizure of their city by Islamic State militants. The Turkish government, however, has criticized the operation. VOA’s Scott Bobb reports from southeastern Turkey, across the border from Kobani.
Video

Video US ‘Death Cafes’ Put Focus on the Finale

In contemporary America, death usually is a topic to be avoided. But the growing “death café” movement encourages people to discuss their fears and desires about their final moments. VOA’s Jerome Socolovsky reports.
Video

Video Ebola Orphanage Opens in Sierra Leone

Sierra Leone's first Ebola orphanage has opened in the Kailahun district. Hundreds of children orphaned since the beginning of the Ebola outbreak face stigma and rejection with nobody to care for them. Adam Bailes reports for VOA about a new interim care center that's aimed at helping the growing number of children affected by Ebola.

All About America

AppleAndroid