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Justice for FUOYE: SERAP, Eleka, others condemn killing of students by Nigeria police, demand justice

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By DANIEL Whyte


NIGERIANS have taken to Twitter to condemn the arbitrary shooting and extrajudicial killing of students of the Federal University Oye-Ekiti (FUOYE), Ekiti State, by security operatives attached to the wife of Ekiti state governor, Bisi Adeleye-Fayemi.

The ICIR earlier reported how two students of the university died from gunshot wounds sustained after policemen opened fire at them on Tuesday evening.

One of the victims, Oluwaseyi Kehinde, a first-year student of Crop Science and Horticulture, was buried amid tears and wailings on Thursday.

Using the hashtag #JusticeForFUOYE, many have since condemned the incident and called for the investigation and prosecution of the culprits.

SERAP, a non-profit legal and advocacy organisation, condemned the excessive use of force by the police against the student protesters.

“We condemn the reported unlawful killing of at least 2 students of #FUOYE by @PoliceNG,” it tweeted on Thursday. 

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“The police reportedly used live ammunition and other forms of excessive force against protesting students and injured & arbitrarily detained some of them.”

SERAP noted that Nigerian students have the right to protest without losing their lives or getting arrested.

The NGO urged that “the Nigerian authorities MUST promptly and thoroughly investigate the unlawful killings and hold to account all those responsible.”

On the whereabouts of some other students believed to have been arrested by the police in connection with the Tuesday, protest, SERAP demanded for their immediate release.

“The authorities should reveal the students’ whereabouts and release them immediately and unconditionally. The familiar tactic of violence and abuses by @PoliceNG to silence dissent will not solve any of Nigeria’s problems,” it further said.

“The @UNHumanRights, the African Union, and others should also press the Nigerian authorities for an independent investigation into the killings, all abuses during the protests in Oye-Ekiti. Federal University of Oye-Ekiti students deserve justice, reparation, adequate compensation.”

SERAP conclusively noted that its “legal team is closely monitoring the situation in Oye and will take legal action as appropriate” while emphasising that “Nigerian authorities must unambiguously call a halt to the violence, ensure justice for the victims, and allow students and other Nigerians to exercise their right to protest.”

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Among others who have strongly condemned the killings is Segun Awosanya, convener of the EndSARS movement.

“The victims of the murderous convoy have parents, who are currently grieving and the unelected & presumed mother who claimed to be on an empowerment program is justifying the murders by the slimy attempt to save her face by playing victim?!” he tweeted on Wednesday.

“The @PoliceNG officers must be named and the vicarious liability pursued to the letter. Anyone with details of the family of the deceased should reach out to us. Has Gov @kfayemi made a statement yet? Does citizens life matter to him?

“So four unarmed promising students were gunned down needlessly and these folks believe it can be swept under the carpet by brown envelope media spin?! You have another think coming. This will not go unpunished. You have no power to murder humans and get away with it. #EndImpunity.”

On Friday, he also stated: “The injustice meted out to students of #FUOYE is not just an assault to students in that university but to all the youth in Nigeria. This is beyond the deceased/victimized by the diabolical thirsty for blood. It’ll visit your campus soon if we don’t fight it now.”

Kolapo Eleka, former deputy governor of Ekiti State and 2019 governorship candidate, has also decried the fatal incident.

He offered condolences to the victims on Thursday and urged that value be placed on human lives.

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“We must live in a society where human lives mean something to us, rather than being comfortable celebrating barbarism and lavishing public funds on fruitless purposes,” he said, adding that his prayers “are with the students and families of the victims, including the people of our entire State at this moment.”

Here are other reactions on Twitter:

https://twitter.com/jegede__/status/1172411512008278016

https://twitter.com/Timmy_ally1/status/1172248824452124678

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