The Senate had begin a fresh move to investigate the alleged unlawful killings and imprisonment of over 250 Nigerians in Ethiopia.
This followed a motion, titled ‘Urgent need to investigate the unlawful killings and incarceration of over 250 Nigerians in Ethiopia’, sponsored by the Minority Leader of the Senate, Senator Simon Mwadkwon, (PDP Plateau North), and Senator Victor Umeh (YPP Anambra Central).
Presenting the motion, Mwadkwon urged the Senate to direct the committees on Diaspora and Foreign Affairs to work with the Federal Government to immediately constitute a committee to visit the Republic of Ethiopia with a view to investigating what is happening to Nigerians in the country.
He also called on the Federal Government to immediately direct the Ethiopian Embassy to collaborate with the delegation of the Senate committees on Diaspora and Foreign Affairs to find a lasting solution to problems being faced and or encountered by Nigerians who are held in Ethiopia.
According to him, “The video clip being circulated in the social media indicates that Nigerians are held captives in the maximum prison of Ethiopia and are in serious peril which calls for urgent intervention and thorough probe into the heinous activities.”
He lamented that this was happening despite the clarion call for unity among nations of the world.
Mwadkwon noted that “there is a widespread information currently being circulated by Dr. Paul Ezike calling Nigerian government to intervene on the inhumanity and torture that Nigerians are receiving in Ethiopia without evidence of commission of any crime”.
He added that “based on the widespread information being circulated, over 250 Nigerians who have continued to face these maltreatment and inhumanity have not committed any crime known to any law and there is no evidence of any court proceedings stating the categories of crimes they have committed or any court conviction in that regard”.
He further noted that “at the moment based on the sovereignty of this country and the sanctity of the lives and properties of all Nigerians all over the world as captured in the Nigerian Constitution especially sections 33, 34 & 35 of the 1999 Constitution as amended, which has similar provisions in other international codes, instruments and conventions which Nigeria and Ethiopia are signatories to, there is no justification whatsoever for taking away the dignity of any person, let alone taking away the life of a citizen”.
“In the midst of the economic and social hardships being experienced by our citizens, yet some over 250 people who belong to this nation are currently being subjected to inhuman and degrading treatment which calls for urgent intervention of these hallowed chambers as the lives of those 250 people matter most to us.
“It is pathetic that a nation as populous as Nigeria, the giant of Africa, our citizens are being held in captivity in the 21st century where the call is for unity among nation states but quite lugubriously that Ethiopia has chosen shallow path to maltreat and mistreat the citizens of Nigeria without any justification as shown in a video by Dr. Paul Ezike,” the lawmaker further stressed.