248/02 : Interights and World Organisation against Torture / Nigeria Summary of Facts 1. The complaint is filed by INTERIGHTS and the World Organisation Against Torture/Organisation Mondiale Contre la Torture on behalf of individuals who requested anonymity as permitted under Article 56.1 of the African Charter. 2. In their complaint, the Complainants allege that between May 1999 and March 2002, the Federal Republic of Nigeria has engaged in extra-judicial executions, state-sponsored violence and impunity. 3. The Complainants allege that during the said period, the Federal Republic of Nigeria has directly, through its armed forces, members of its law enforcement agencies and similar officials of the state, participated or been complicit or implicated in the extra-judicial execution of cumulatively over ten thousand persons at different locations in Nigeria. 4. They allege that the Federal Republic of Nigeria has directly, through its armed forces, members of its law enforcement agencies and similar officials of the state, participated or been complicit or implicated in the verifiable and forcible internal displacement of over one million persons in Nigeria. 5. They allege that the Federal Republic of Nigeria has systematically and deliberately in all the cases of extra-judicial execution and forcible displacement, denied the victims access to remedies in violation of its obligations under the African Charter. It has, by reason of all these violations over a period of more than two and a half years, committed systematic, serious and massive violations of human and peoples’ rights recognised by the African Charter which is domestic law in Nigeria. 6. The authors of the complaint allege that they have independently verified the allegations described in the complaint. They assert that the epidemiology of the violations described in the complaint precluded the requirement to exhaust domestic remedies in Nigeria. They cited the decision of the [African] Commission on admissibility in communication 25/89[47/90, 56/91, 100/93] Free Legal [Assistance] Group et al./Zaire wherein the Commission held that the requirement of exhaustion of local remedies need not be applied literally “in cases where it is impractical or undesirable for the individual complainant to seize domestic courts in the cases of each individual complainant.” This is the case where there are a large number of individual victims. Due to the seriousness of the human rights situation as well as the great numbers of people involved, such remedies as might theoretically exist in the domestic courts are, as a practical matter, unavailable or, in the words of the Charter, unduly prolonged”. Complaint 7. The Complainants allege violation of Articles 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 7(1), 12(1), 13(1), 13(2), 14, 15, 16, 17(1), 17(2), 18, 25 and 26 of the African Charter. 8. In their prayers for redress, the Complainants request the [African] Commission to: • • • • undertake an independent investigation and verification of the violations being complained of; request, pending its decision on this communication, its Special Rapporteurs on Human Rights of Women, on Summary, Arbitrary and Extra-Judicial Executions, and on Prisons to undertake a joint investigation of violence, extra-judicial executions and related violations in Nigeria and to request the government to accede to the conduct of such an investigation; request the government to verify the number and manner of death of all victims of extrajudicial executions during the period covered by the communication; request the government to provide adequate and appropriate remedies to the victims of violations alleged in this communication, including, in particular, the prosecution of all persons implicated in the violations;

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