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

French Refugee Drama Wins Cannes Top Prize

Dheepan is about a group of Sri Lankan refugees who pretend to be a family in order to flee their war-torn country for a housing project in France More

Photogallery Crisis in Macedonia Requires Meaningful and Swift Measures

The international community has called on Macedonian leadership to take concrete measures in support of democracy in order to exit the crisis More

Activists: IS Executes 217 Civilians, Soldiers Near Palmyra

British-based Syrian Observatory for Human Rights on Sunday said the victims include nurses, women, children and Syrian government fighters 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.
Turkey's Main Opposition Party Hopes for Election Breakthroughi
X
May 22, 2015 10:23 AM
Turkey’s main opposition Republican People’s Party has sought an image change ahead of the June 7 general election. The move comes after suffering successive defeats at the hands of the Islamist-rooted AK Party, which has portrayed it as hostile to religion. Dorian Jones reports from the western city of Izmir.
Video

Video Turkey's Main Opposition Party Hopes for Election Breakthrough

Turkey’s main opposition Republican People’s Party has sought an image change ahead of the June 7 general election. The move comes after suffering successive defeats at the hands of the Islamist-rooted AK Party, which has portrayed it as hostile to religion. Dorian Jones reports from the western city of Izmir.
Video

Video Europe Follows US Lead in Tackling ‘Conflict Minerals’

Metals mined from conflict zones in places like the Democratic Republic of Congo are often sold by warlords to buy weapons. This week European lawmakers voted to force manufacturers to prove that their supply chains are not inadvertently fueling conflicts and human rights abuses. Henry Ridgwell reports from London.
Video

Video Class Tackles Questions of Race, Discrimination

Unrest in some U.S. cities is more than just a trending news item at Ladue Middle School in St. Louis, Missouri. As VOA’s Kane Farabaugh reports, it’s a focus of a multicultural studies class engaging students in wide-ranging discussions about racial tensions and police aggression.
Video

Video Mind-Controlled Prosthetics Are Getting Closer

Scientists and engineers are making substantial advances towards the ultimate goal in prosthetics – creation of limbs that can be controlled by the wearer’s mind. Thanks to sophisticated sensors capable of picking up the brain’s signals, an amputee in Iceland is literally bringing us one step closer to that goal. VOA’s George Putic reports.
Video

Video Afghan Economy Sinks As Foreign Troops Depart

As international troops prepare to leave Afghanistan, and many foreign aid groups follow, Afghans are grappling with how the exodus will affect the country's fragile economy. Ayesha Tanzeem reports from the Afghan capital, Kabul.
Video

Video Poverty, Ignorance Force Underage Girls Into Marriage

The recent marriage of a 17-year old Chechen girl to a local police chief who was 30 years older and already had a wife caused an outcry in Russia and beyond. The bride was reportedly forced to marry and her parents were intimidated into giving their consent. The union spotlighted yet again the plight of many underage girls in developing countries. Zlatica Hoke reports poverty, ignorance and fear are behind the practice, especially in Asia and Africa.
Video

Video South Korea Marks Gwangju Uprising Anniversary

South Korea this week marked the 35th anniversary of a protest that turned deadly. The Gwangju Uprising is credited with starting the country’s democratic revolution after it was violently quelled by South Korea’s former military rulers. But as Jason Strother reports, some observers worry that democracy has recently been eroded.
Video

Video California’s Water System Not Created To Handle Current Drought

The drought in California is moving into its fourth year. While the state's governor is mandating a reduction in urban water use, most of the water used in California is for agriculture. But both city dwellers and farmers are feeling the impact of the drought. Some experts say the state’s water system was not created to handle long periods of drought. Elizabeth Lee reports from Ventura County, an agricultural region just northwest of Los Angeles.
Video

Video How to Clone a Mammoth: The Science of De-Extinction

An international team of scientists has sequenced the complete genome of the woolly mammoth. Led by the Swedish Museum of Natural History in Stockholm, the work opens the door to recreate the huge herbivore, which last roamed the Earth 4,000 years ago. VOA’s Rosanne Skirble considers the science of de-extinction and its place on the planet
Video

Video Blind Boy Defines His Life with Music

Cole Moran was born blind. He also has cognitive delays and other birth defects. He has to learn everything by ear. Nevertheless, the 12-year-old has had an insatiable love for music since he was born. VOA’s June Soh introduces us to the young phenomenal harmonica player.

VOA Blogs