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Reps move to address violation of human rights of Nigerians in Indonesia

House Committee chair on appropriation wins return ticket

The House of Representatives on Wednesday took steps to address the violation of human rights and unfair treatment of Nigerians in Indonesia.

It therefore mandated the Committees on Diaspora and Foreign Affairs to investigate the allegations of heavy-handedness and inhuman treatment of Late Arinze Igweike, and other Nigerians by Indonesian Officers, and report back within four weeks.

This was sequel to the adoption of a motion sponsored by Lynda Chuba-Ikpeazu, a member of the House at plenary.

Presenting the motion, Ikpeazu noted that Indonesia is a signatory to the United Nation’s Universal Declaration on Human Rights of 1948, which advocates for the protection of the fundamental rights and freedom of every human being.

She expressed concern that despite various reports of the heavy-handedness of Indonesian security and law enforcement officers towards Nigerians that have led to allegations of illegal arrests, detention, tortures, extortions, and other unreported fundamental human rights breaches, nothing has been done to reverse this unfortunate and unsavory trend.

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The lawmaker said the House is:
“Aggrieved about the recently reported death of Late Arinze Igweike on March 14, 2022, a bright and promising native of Onitsha, who was allegedly arrested in Jakarta by Indonesian Immigration Police for unidentified offences and eventually died in Police custody without any proceedings being brought against him.

“Also notes that in July 2020 another Nigerian, identified as Chukwueze died after he was allegedly arrested, extorted and tortured by Indonesian Immigration Officials, thereafter resulting in massive protests at the Nigeria Embassy in Jakarta against discrimination and targeted raids by Indonesian Officers;

“Further notes that in August 2021, the Federal Ministry of Foreign Affairs confirmed the assault of a Nigerian diplomat by Immigration Officials in Jakarta, Indonesia, where the diplomat was manhandled and arrested in front of his official quarters, a disgraceful action that is clearly against International Law and the Vienna Conventions governing Diplomatic and Consular Relations between States;

“Cognizant of the urgent need to address the heavy-handedness and inhuman treatment meted on Nigerians by the Indonesian Authorities, before more Nigerians lose their lives, as this will undoubtedly strain the relationship between the Nigerian and Indonesian Government if not addressed.”