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NHRC to Plan Probe on the Army’s Alleged Abortion of 10,000 Pregnancies

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The National Human Rights Commission is preparing to launch a Special Independent Investigative Panel on Human Rights Violations in the Implementation of Counter Insurgency Operations in the North East (SIIP – North East). This is revealed in a statement issued by NHRC executive secretary Tony Ojukwu.

The executive secretary stated that, among other things, the panel would look into the Reuters report that claimed the Nigerian Army had aborted numerous pregnancies in the North-East during the last ten years.

The Nigerian army was accused of massacring children and committing sexual and gender-based violence (SGBV). The army denied the accusations, claiming they were an attempt to tarnish the reputation of Nigeria’s armed forces.

Mr Tony stated that the panel will be established on February 7 at the Bukhari Auditorium, NHRC Headquarters in Abuja.

Members of the proposed panel include Abdu Aboki (retired Supreme Court justice) as chairman, Kemi Okonyedo, representing Women Right Organisation, Azubuike Nwankenta, representing NBA, retired Maj.-Gen. Letam Wiwa, an expert in military law and intelligence, Maisaratu Bakari, a consultant in obstetrics and gynaecology at the Modibbo Adama University Teaching Hospital Yola, Fatima (psychologist representing youths).

The Nigerian military reportedly conducts a covert abortion program for female Boko Haram victims in the country’s North-East, according to a Reuters story. The UN had requested that the administration of President Muhammadu Buhari look into this matter last December.

The Chief of Defence Staff, Lucky Irabor, had said of the mass abortion report, “It’s outright nonsense. Their allusion is news to me. It never occurred. I never saw anything like that from Maiduguri down to Maimalamari Cantonment, where I lived, which is a major hospital for our personnel and their family. I am disappointed, to say the least. So it is not true.”

 

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