Kidnapping: HURIWA moves to petition Pope Francis, UK parliament, Anglican Church

A leading non-governmental and pro-democracy organization, Human Rights Writers Association of Nigeria, HURIWA, has vowed to petition Pope Francis of the Catholic Church over the spate of kidnapping and killings in Nigeria.

HURIWA also disclosed that it will petition the primate of Anglican Church worldwide in the United Kingdom over kidnappings and killing next week.

The body explained that the move was aimed at seeking intervention by the world leaders because the crime of kidnappings has become of the greatest cause of death of religious leaders in Nigeria and the subregion.

In a statement by the National Coordinator Comrade Emmanuel Onwubiko and National Media Affairs Director Miss Zainab Yusuf, HURIWA disclosed that by next week it will present letters demanding global actions to the global office of Amnesty International in London and the British parliament in Westminster.

The NGO also called on both religious and political leaders to adopt a holistic national policy on violent kidnappings and how to check the astronomic rise in violent crime.

The group also challenged President Muhammadu Buhari to table the matter of violent kidnappings in the subregion before a high-level consultative parley of the Economic Community of West African States, ECOWAS, because the menace is harming industrialization in West Africa and discouraging direct foreign investors from bringing their businesses to the kidnappings prone region.

The body lamented that it “regret that over the past decade the crime of violent criminal abductions/kidnappings of Nigerians for ransom payments have only received lips service and piecemeal cosmetic approach without any major national momentum to criminalize these vicious acts of depravity and enforce capital punishment as the legal sanctions.”

It accused the, “police and other security agencies of colluding to perpetuate the crimes of armed kidnappings going by the likelihood that they may be receiving pay-offs from the bandits who have become increasingly daring and sophisticated.”

According to HURIWA, “We have resolved to present a petition to the primate of Anglican Church worldwide in the United Kingdom next week and to dispatch a written presentation to the Holy Father Pope Francis in Rome to demand global leaders’ intervention because the crimes of kidnappings have become of the greatest cause of death of religious leaders in Nigeria and the subregion.

“We call on the leadership of the Catholic Bishops Conference of Nigeria (CBCN), the Christian Association of Nigeria and the Nigerian Council for Islamic Affairs, to meet President Muhammadu Buhari, the council of states and the National Assembly to confront the national security emergency created by the unprecedented rates of armed violent kidnappings in Nigeria.”

It asserted that “kidnappers both from within and without have discovered that the Nigerian government tolerates impunity of widespread mass killings by all kinds of freelance armed hoodlums so they have evolved a thriving industry of armed kidnappings for payments aided by some rogue elements in the police and security forces.”

It, therefore, tasked the Federal government to also inaugurate a probe panel made up of internationally acclaimed forensic investors drawn from across the globe to fish out operatives and officers of the police and other security forces who are actively participating in the thriving criminal enterprise of armed kidnappings for monetary settlements.

HURIWA recalled that “Killings and kidnapping of priests, religious and other pastoral workers especially in West Africa, seem to be on the increase”, adding that the “English Africa Service, Vatican News from the Vatican City has now beamed its searchlight on this emerging but sinister criminal gangsterism of armed kidnappings.”

Source: Daily Post

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