While the Nigerian Government, using violence, threats, sabotage, disinformation and other underhanded tactics, has culled protests going on in the country, there is still work that can be done to advance the requests of the #EndSARS protests – an end to police brutality, justice for victims and a better governed Nigeria.
We can still apply pressure on Nigerian government officials using the mechanisms provided in the countries where we live.
Throughout this period, we have seen change petitions seeking to apply sanctions to Nigerian government officials. These petitions have proven to be a great way to raise awareness and seek support. There’s a wonderful list compiled by The Diasporic Nigerian
Here in Canada, there is a formal petitions process that allows citizens and residents to draw attention to an issue of public interest or concern and to request that the House of Commons, the Government of Canada, a Minister of the Crown, or a Member of the House of Commons take some action.
Thanks to Suliya Mizou (@abikeadelynn), an official petition has been filed that calls on the the House of Commons in Parliament to do the following:
- Pass a motion in Parliament and for the Government of Canada to issue a statement condemning the October 20th Lekki toll gate massacre in Lagos State and to voice its support for the rights of Nigerian citizens to peacefully protest for the purposes of demanding accountability, the end of corruption and extrajudicial killings of its people.
- Request the UN or AU to organize an independent fact finding mission, the purpose of which will inform the implementation of targeted sanctions under the Magnitsky Act against government officials involved in directing these or other human rights abuses.
- Utilize all levers of political influence and work alongside other state, civil society and international partners to ensure that perpetrators of past or any future violations are held accountable and that the units known as SARS or SWAT are immediately abolished.
In order for the petition to be presented to the House of Commons and tabled for a government response, it requires at least 500 signatures from any citizen or resident of Canada. This is an action that Nigerian and non-nigerians can take.