by Patience Ogbo
National Human Rights Commission has received petition against the Oba of Lagos, Oba Rilwan Akiolu, the chairman of the commission, Chidi Odinkalu, has said. Mr. Odinkalu made the disclosure when he was reacting to questions from journalists during an interactive session towards the 2015 governorship and State House of Assemblies election at the CLEEN Foundation office in Lagos. He said the petition is on Akiolu’s threats against the Igbos in the state.
His words: ‘’The Commission received a petition against the Oba of Lagos but my advice to Lagosians and to Nigerians in general is that they should look at the positive outcome of this election and not dwell on the negative.
A great thing happened in Lagos State during the last elections that we are not talking about. Nobody is talking about the three House of Representatives seats won by non indigents in the state.
To me, this is a big plus for Lagos that the state has become the centre of integration and a cosmopolitan state for Nigerians. We should talk more about things that integrate us not things that bring division.’’
Mr. Odinkalu said the Commission is worried about the rise of militia groups and the proliferation of small and light weapons that can result to election related violence in volatile states like Rivers, Lagos , Benue, Akwa- Ibom,Imo , Bauchi and Ekiti.
He added that the Commission has mapped out strategies with security agencies and private organisations to mitigate violence, before, during and after the election. Mr. Odinkalu revealed that though the mortality rates during the 2015 election was 60 compared to 1000 in 2011, he decried the loss of lives including that of security operatives during elections.
He added that no Nigerian should die because of election. He further assured Nigerians that the Commission was committed to upholding their rights and as such the Commission had begun training and retraining of staff to become more professional.
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