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Antonio Guterres Adviser Express Concern Over Situation In Ethiopia

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The Special Adviser of the United Nations (UN) Secretary-General, António Guterres, on the Prevention of Genocide, Alice Wairimu Nderitu has raised grave concern over the deterioration situation of Ethiopia, warning that the situation poses a great threat to the unity of the country and the East Africa sub region.

Nderitu, in a statement on Tuesday on the situation in Ethiopia, said she is gravely concerned at the deterioration of the situation of Ethiopia, where escalation of violence, increased incidence of ethnically and religiously motivated hate speech, displacement of populations and destruction of property display serious indicators of risk of commission of atrocity crimes.

She echoed calls for de-escalation and dialogue to address the current crises, including by the Secretary-General and the Chairperson of the African Union.

She said: “It is essential that all parties take serious and urgent steps to de-escalate the situation and take active measures to mitigate the risk of commission of wide-spread and systematic violence, including along ethnic lines. This risk is real and must be addressed as a matter of urgency.”

She noted that the decentralized nature of the country and the strengthening of ethnic-based allegiances, especially at the community level, enhances the possibility of such violence.

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She said “further deterioration can have very serious consequences not only for the future of the country but for the overall region, including cross-border conflicts. It is therefore vital that regional actors take any possible initiative to strengthen dialogue and put an end to the armed conflict, including by supporting ongoing regional mediation efforts, and that the international community remains engaged in supporting such efforts and in contributing to open further options for peace.

“This includes the African Union’s Peace and Security Council, and the Intergovernmental Authority on Development (IGAD) both of which have a key role to play.”

She noted that only through genuine and inclusive dialogue can Ethiopians address the root causes of their divergences and preserve their country’s unity and stability, which includes at the community level, where strategies to reduce conflict, division, distrust and hostility are especially paramount.

She noted that: “Unfortunately, dynamics conducive to legitimizing violence for political and ethnic nationalism purposes precede the current conflict, and the current conflict is likely to build upon this negative legacy. This cycle needs to be broken for sustainable peace to emerge. Through dialogue, Ethiopians can find solutions based on shared needs and interests and build a common sense of belonging through constant interaction and shared experiences. In short, they can see once more that they have more commonalities than differences, as their kinship ties across ethnicities go back centuries.”

The Special Adviser reiterates concerns expressed in her 5 February and 30 July statements on the situation in this country, and notes that current developments occur in a context of history of inter-ethnic conflict; ongoing human rights violations and absence of accountability; increased politicization of identity and past grievances; increased inflammatory rhetoric, propaganda campaigns or hate speech; sexual and gender-based violence and creation of, or increased support to, militia or paramilitary groups.

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The Special Adviser also noted that the country continues witnessing inter-group tensions and patterns of discrimination against specific groups, including ethnic profiling, incitement to violence and allegations of systematic attacks against specific populations.

She said: “These all constitute risk factors for atrocity crimes. Given their potential impact in triggering large-scale violence, allegations of hate speech by ethnic and religious leaders are particularly concerning.”

She however acknowledged the serious violations by all parties between November 2020 and August 2021 documented in the Joint Investigation into Alleged Violations of International Human Rights, Humanitarian and Refugee Law Committed by all Parties, issued by the Ethiopian Human Rights Commission and the Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights this week.

The Special Adviser joined the High Commissioner for Human Rights in urging national and international national actors to take steps for accountability for the serious violations documented in the period covered by report, as well as for the alleged violations committed since. In this direction.

She welcomed the establishment of a high level inter-ministerial task force in response to the Joint Investigation and encourages this body to take urgent steps, stressing that: “Accountability constitutes an essential prerequisite for prevention and must be prioritized as such.”

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The Special Adviser also called on all non-State actors in a position of leverage to do their utmost to contribute to mitigating risks of further deterioration, noting that: “This includes tech and social media companies, to which I am grateful for their efforts to limit the reach of inflammatory statements by political actors,” while also calling on religious leaders and actors “to contribute to counter the seeds of division and to bring communities together.”

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Group Calls For Protection Of Journalists In Bayelsa, Imo, Kogi States

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The Media Rights Agenda (MRA) has urged for necessary measures to protect journalists and other media workers during this weekend’s off-cycle elections in Bayelsa, Imo, and Kogi States.

The group sent the request to the federal and state governments, as well as law enforcement and security agencies, stressing that the role of journalists in disseminating information about the electoral process is critical to ensuring free, fair, and transparent elections.

In a statement issued ahead of the elections in Lagos and signed by the Communications Officer, Media Rights Agenda, Idowu Adewale, MRA also urged journalists to be cautious and to use its existing hotline (08138755660) to report any threat or attack they may encounter during the process, as well as any obstacle.

Adewale said in the statement: “Given the pattern of heightened attacks on journalists and the media during previous elections, including the recent 2023 general elections, as well as the tense political climate in the three states in the lead-up to the elections, measures must be taken to ensure general security during the elections and provide adequate protection for journalists covering the elections.”

“Access to information allows citizens and other members of the public to have the information they need about political and electoral processes, facilitating effective public participation in elections,” he says.

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“Journalists and the media play an important role in ensuring residents and other members of the public have access to information and may participate in the process.

“As part of efforts to preserve the integrity of the polls, it is also critical that the safety and well-being of these interlocutors be assured and safeguarded.”

Lamenting the increased number of attacks on journalists in the run-up to the off-cycle elections, as well as earlier this year in the run-up to the general elections, he emphasised that “a free and vibrant media is fundamental to a healthy democracy, and journalists must be able to carry out their duties without fear, coercion, or violence.” During this vital phase, MRA stands ready to assist them and assure their safety.”

 

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CRIME

Police Nab Husband, As Mother Of ‘Mummy Be Calming Down’ Boy Takes Own Life

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Men from the Edo State Police Command are said to have detained Mrs. Toluige Olokoobi’s husband after he allegedly murdered her.

Olokoobi was the mother of Oreofeoluwa Lawal-Babalola, the tiny boy whose video went viral in 2020 after he pleaded with his mother, “Mummy be calming down.”

Oreofeoluwa rose to prominence on social media after a video of him crying in an attempt to confidently appeal to his mother, who chastised him, went viral.

The film inspired Lagos State Governor Babajide Sanwo-Olu, who used it to deliver an Eid-el-Kabir appeal to Muslims and Lagos people in general to remain calm during the COVID-19 outbreak.

Following that, the youngster and his family met with the governor, who praised his bravery and poise.

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While little has been heard about the family in three years, heartbreaking news broke on social media on Tuesday that the boy’s mother had committed suicide.

According to an X user, Olokoobi committed suicide in Benin, the capital of Edo State, for unknown reasons.

The X user, who stated that he was present at the site on Monday afternoon, went on to say that she had refused to disclose her difficulties with anyone before committing herself.

“The woman in the viral Mummy Calm Down video has just committed suicide here in Benin,” he stated in an email.

“She refused to discuss her problems with anyone.” She abandoned three children for her husband, including the well-known Mummy Calm Down boy.”

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Meanwhile, confirming Olokoobi’s death in a chat with BBC Pidgin, the spokesperson of the Edo State police command, Chidi Nwabuzor, said her husband has been arrested and detained for questioning.

Nwabuzor said the husband reported the matter to the police.

The police spokesperson quoted the husband to have said that “he came home from the market when he saw his wife hanging with rope on her neck”.

Nwabuzor said she was rushed to the hospital and then to the mortuary after she was confirmed dead. (Adapted from a Vanguard report).

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CRIME

Anambra: CP Aderemi Adeoye Decorates Promoted Officers With New Ranks

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The Anambra State Police Command Headquarters Conference Hall was a hive of activity Thursday as CP Aderemi Adeoye took turns decorating around 18 promoted officers of the command with their new titles.

The delight of some of the officers whose wives assisted the CP in decorating their husbands with their new ranks knew no bounds, as their husbands duly saluted their wives and the CP for their new positions and responsibilities.

Obi Innocent, one of the officers elevated to the rank of Chief Superintendent of Police (CSP), whose wife joined CP Aderemi Adeoye in adorning him with his new rank, said it was wonderful that the Inspector General of Police thought him worthy.

CSP Obi Innocent, the officer in charge of the Legal Department at Zone 13, Police Zonal Headquarters Ukpo, stated that his new rank was a call to service and that he would do his best to uphold the charge given to them by CP Aderemi Adeoye to respect and protect the citizenry’s fundamental rights in the discharge of their new assignments.

Charity Akharame, who was honoured with the rank of Deputy Superintendent of Police (DSP) and was the only female officer among the 18 promoted officers decorated with new ranks, said it was not an easy feat but she was grateful to be among those who were decorated with their new ranks.

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DSP Charity Akharame, the officer in charge of stores in the Anambra State Police Command, recalled how she began as a Police Constable and worked her way up to her current position as Deputy Superintendent of Police.

She stated that as a very disciplined police officer, she would follow the Police Commissioner’s directions regarding respect for all and sundry in the fulfillment of her constitutional obligations.

Jane-Frances Obi, one of the spouses of the officers elevated to the level of CSP, stated that being the wife of a police officer was not an easy assignment. As a result, she recommended any lady who is married to a police officer to be patient and understanding because the job is quite demanding.

Jane-Frances Obi, whose husband is Innocent Obi, the officer in charge of the Legal Department at Zone 13 Ukpo, believes the promotion is a reward for years of being patient, understanding, and standing in for them when they are not present.

Meanwhile, Emenike Chinenyenwa, who was decorated with the rank of Assistant Commissioner of Police (ACP) and presented a vote of appreciation, expressed deep gratitude to the IGP and the Chairman of the Police Service Commission for considering them worthy of being adorned in their new ranks.

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ACP Emenike, the officer in charge of Medicals, stated that the elevation comes with increased responsibility and that they will work harder in their new tasks.

CP Aderemi Adeoye praised the current promotion winners in his remarks, noting that two aspects make the police career very interesting and eventful. He stated that one is for promotion and the other is for positions.

CP Adeoye, on the other hand, urged the newly honored officers to develop more empathy, compassion, care, and dedication in the performance of their jobs.

The police chief insisted that newly promoted officers must first recognise that they share the same humanity as others, and as a result, they must treat all people with dignity and protect their fundamental human rights at all times.

CP Aderemi Adeoye stressed that without the enormous roles of spouses, they wouldn’t have been successful in their careers. He therefore congratulated all the promoted and prayed that God gives them good health to enjoy the new ranks and the energy to discharge the responsibilities of their new offices.

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  • Source: Independent

 

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