Ambassadorial Portfolio Can’t Stop ICC Investigation of Ex-Service Chiefs, Says PDP

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By Chuks Okocha

The Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) yesterday berated the All Progressives Congress (APC) leadership in the Senate for ‘betraying Nigerians’ by clearing the former military Services Chiefs for ambassadorial portfolios despite reports of crime against humanity committed under their command.

The party, however, insisted that the clearance would not stop the investigation and possible prosecution of the accused commanders by the International Criminal Court (ICC) for crime against humanity, which preliminary steps have already commenced by the ICC.

In a statement issued by the National Publicity Secretary of the PDP, Kola Ologbondiyan, he said: “It is indeed horrendous that the APC leadership in the Senate could choose to betray Nigerians by rushing to clear the accused ex-service chiefs in a desperate attempt to grant them diplomatic immunity and shield them from investigation and prosecution for the atrocities committed against Nigerians under their command.

“Though it is a public knowledge that the current APC Senate leadership is a mere rubber stamp and contrivance being used to endorse atrocious policies and suppress the will of the people, however, descending to the level of aiding and abetting crime against humanity by attempting to confer diplomatic immunity on the accused ex-commanders is to say the least despicable.”

According to the PDP, “It is indeed shameful that the APC leadership in the Senate could clear the ex-service chiefs, who the National Assembly had earlier indicted and requested for their sack over security failures and alleged compromises.”

It said such reward of failure amounts to stabbing the Nigeria in the back.

The PDP cautioned the APC leadership in the Senate that such decision has painted the entire National Assembly in a bad light before Nigerians and the international community.

Already, the party had stated that the development was pitching the Senate against the majority of Nigerians, particularly the victims of acts of terrorism as well as those of the reported extra-judicial killings, arbitrary arrests, illegal detentions in dehumanising camps, massacre of peaceful protesters, torture, rape and other atrocities allegedly committed under the ex-commanders as detailed in the reports of credible international bodies, including the United States Department of State, Amnesty International (AI), and Transparency International (TI).

The party, however, commended its members in the Senate for rejecting the clearance of the ex-service chiefs as ambassadors, and urged them not to relent in taking legislative steps to ensure their recall.