By Joseph Edeh
The Nigeria Police Fore has rejected the alleged Amnesty International Nigeria report on the use of force against members of the Islamic Movement of Nigeria (IMN) also known as shi’ites.
The News Agency of Nigeria ( NAN ) reports that the organisation had alleged in its report on Wednesday that the police and military used deadly force against IMN members.
It also said that security forces must be held responsible for killing 45 members of the group.
NAN also report that members of the sect had been protesting the detention of their leader, Sheik Ibrahim El-Zakzaky since 2015 after a clash with the Chief of Army Staff’s convoy.
A statement by the force spokesman, acting DCP Jimoh Moshood on Thursday in Abuja, said the allegation against the police was false.
“The Nigeria police force wishes to state categorically that the allegation against the police by the Amnesty International is in its entirety untrue,” he said.
Moshood said that the report also alleged that the military dispersed peaceful gatherings by firing live ammunition without warning.
The spokesman said that the report was a clear misrepresentation and absolute distortion of facts to divert attention from the heinous crimes committed by the IMN members.
He said that the group had carried out a provocative attack on police personnel and set ablaze a patrol vehicle in the Federal Capital Territory (FCT) on Wednesday.
Moshood said that in spite of the provocation from the members of the group, the force resisted the use of maximum force on them.
“To set the record straight, there was no report of death in any police station in the FCT from the police intervention and quelling of the disturbance of public peace and public safety.
“The Force sees the Amnesty International allegation against the police as deliberate and desperate attempt to cast aspersions on the investigation and ongoing prosecution of the arrested members of the group,” he said.
He said the force would not be deterred from carrying its statutory duties nor condone lawlessness by any group under any disguise.
Moshood said that force would continue to operate within the ambit of the law and ensure the diligent prosecution of the arrested members of the group in Abuja.
He implored members of the public to disregard and discountenance the allegation by Amnesty International.