The Civil Society Legislative Advocacy Centre (CISLAC) has expressed concern over what it described as ‘growing undemocratic clampdown’ on peaceful protesters in Niger Republic, following its February Presidential election.
In a press statement on Sunday, CISLAC’s Executive Director, Comrade Auwal Ibrahim Musa (Rafsanjani) accused Niger Republic Authorities of suppressing citizens’ fundamental rights and freedom through secretive arbitrary arrests and unlawful detention of peaceful protesters and human right activists.
“We are disappointed that the authorities positioned basically to protect the citizens autocratically embark on an unlawful mission to arbitrarily arrest and imprison them without iota of respect for their civic rights, even when such are guaranteed under Articles 11, 12, 13 of Republic of Niger’s Constitution of 2010,” the statement said.
Citing Articles 14, 15 and 18 of the provision of Niger Republic’s Constitution which gurantees that no citizen shall be submitted to torture, slavery, cruel, inhuman, degrading abuse or treatments among other provisions, CISLAC accused the Nigerien Authorities of gross impunity in dealing with the situation.
“We are more worried by extra-judicial activities of the authorities to arrest and illegally imprison peaceful protesters including Hajia Haoua Abdoulabo, who was arrested and held by the police for 72 hours and illegally transferred to Civil Prison of Niamey on depositary mandate since 15th March, 2021; for her participation in a peaceful protest held against the reported irregularities that marked Presidential elections in February 2021.
“While we monitor with keen interest, the development in Republic of Niger including the death of two individuals, seven electoral officials, mass arrests and illegal restriction of access to internet that dominated the recently concluded elections, we without hesitation reiterate that arbitrary arrests and unlawful detentions of citizens who exercise their fundamental rights and freedom through peaceful protest, constitutes a major violation of the Republic of Niger’s Constitution of 2010 as well as Universal Declaration of Human Rights by the United Nations General Assembly that enshrines the rights and freedoms of all human beings.”
While condemning in totality these violations, CISLAC demanded for immediate release of Hajia Haoua Abdoulabo and other illegally detained protesters by authorities in Republic of Niger.
It also called on regional, continental and international communities to strengthen surveillance on the democracy system, human rights, women rights and citizens’ freedom and impose sanctions where these rights and freedom are being violated.