12 January 2012

Nigeria: Jonathan Urged to Repeal Police Force Order 237

President Goodluck Jonathan has been urged to repeal the Police Force Order 237, which permits officers to use firearms, so as to prevent more casualties in the ongoing nationwide protests which began Monday, over the fuel subsidy removal.

In a statement issued by human rights group, Amnesty International, the group also called on the Nigeria Police Force to stop shooting at protesters and urged the authorities to reform police regulations in line with international standards.

Urging authorities to ensure that the police only use firearms when it is strictly necessary to protect life, the group said the police must be provided with non lethal equipment to properly manage public order situations.

The statement said President Jonathan must repeal the Order and immediately announce that the use of lethal force is only allowed when strictly unavoidable in order to protect life, if he will demonstrate his commitment to protect the people.

The group also urged Jonathan to set up an independent commission of inquiry to investigate all reports of use of force by the police against protesters.

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