Responding to the gun violence that has resulted in at least 123 deaths across Nigeria since President Bola Tinubu’s inauguration on 29 May, Isa Sanusi, Amnesty International’s Acting Nigeria Director, said:
“It is horrific that attacks by gunmen have claimed at least 123 lives mere weeks after President Bola Tinubu assumed office on 29 May. Rural communities, always bracing themselves for the next bout of violence, are facing deadly attacks by rampaging killers. Protecting lives should be the utmost priority of the new government. The Nigerian authorities must urgently take steps to stop the bloodletting.
“The brazen failure of the authorities to protect the people of Nigeria is gradually becoming the ‘norm’ in the country. The government said it will enact security measures in response to these attacks, but these promises have not translated into meaningful action that protects the lives of vulnerable communities. The Nigerian authorities have also consistently failed to carry out independent, effective, impartial and thorough investigations into these killings — and this is fuelling impunity.
“The Nigerian authorities are obliged under international human rights law, regional human rights treaties and Nigeria’s own constitution to protect the human rights of all people without discrimination — and that includes the right to life. Those suspected of criminal responsibility for these callous crimes must urgently be brought to justice in fair trials.”
On 11 June in Plateau State, a gunman shot dead at least 21 people. On 9 June, gunmen killed 25 people in Katako Village, before killing another 13 individuals in Kusherki town on 10 June.
Throughout May 2023, at least 100 people were killed in various communities of Benue State. Between 15-17 May, over 100 people were killed in the Mangu region of Plateau state.
In southern Kaduna, over 100 people were killed by gunmen between December 2022 and April 2023.