Nigeria: IMN Protest - Activists Seek Justice for Slain Colleague

24 January 2020

Civil society activists have called for justice for the family of their colleague who was killed in Abuja in Tuesday's protest by the Islamic Movement in Nigeria (IMN).

Alexander Ogbu was killed by a stray bullet after the police allegedly fired gunshots and teargas to disperse protesting members of the IMN, otherwise known as shi'ites, at Berger Roundabout, Wuse, Abuja.

In a social media post, the Director of the International Institute of Journalism (IIJ), Dr Emman Shehu, questioned the use of live ammunition by the police to disperse demonstrations. While assuring that justice must be done in the matter, he described the deceased as "a journalist, trade unionist, pan-Africanist, author and assured that the Socialist Workers' and Youth League (SWL)".

Also, the Coordinating Director at Praxis Pan-African Centre for Strategic Affairs, Comrade Jaiye Gaskiya, criticised the "reckless policing" and called on the police and the National Human Rights Commission (NHRC) to institute an independent investigation into the killing of the activist, whom he said was not involved in the IMN protest.

"This unfortunate shooting to death of a citizen is one more in the long trail of police brutality resulting in fatalities, due to recklessness on the part of the Police," he said.

"In this circumstance therefore, our duty is to see to it that there's justice for Comrade Alex," he said.

Ogbu, who left behind his wife and a two year-old daughter, was working with the Abuja-based Regent Africa Time magazine. He was between 2009 and 2012 editor at African Herald Express, and later, National Encomium.

Police spokesman, Anjuguri Manzah, said earlier that the Commissioner of Police has instituted an investigation into the killing.

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