Some 16 Civil society groups have raised concern about continued “harassment and detention” of civil society leaders in Niger Republic by the Nigerien President Mahamadou Issoufou.

Over the past three years, civil society activists in Niger have come under siege from state actors in a crackdown that has led to a series of convictions, arrests and detentions affecting civil society leaders.

The arrests come amidst rising poverty in the country, the rise of protests by civil society seeking to protect the people and the increasingly authoritarian response of the State and its security agencies.

The latest wave of arrests thousands of Nigeriens demonstrated against austerity measures embedded in the 2018 budget.

On 25th March 2018, security agents raided offices of major civil society organisations in Niger, attacked and arrested 23 of their leaders.

They include:

  1. Moussa Tchangari

 

  • Me Lirwana Abdourahamane

 

  • Nouhou Mahamadou Arzika

 

  • Ali Idrissa

 

  • Moctar Oumarou

 

  • Halarou Abdou

 

  • Ousseini Maiga

 

  • Moumoudou Seyni

 

  • Moustapha Ibrahim

 

  • Abdoul Aziz Issaka

 

  • Ibrahim Malam Nameiwa

 

  • Bachir Kadri

 

  • Abdoul Kader Hamza

 

  • Alassane Souleymane

 

  • Idrissa Adamou

 

  • Aminou Tayabou

 

  • Abdoulaye Mamadou Koné

 

  • Issoufou Maiwanzam

 

  • Hamaye Abdou

 

  • Chapiou Mahamadou

 

  • Mohamed Aminou Nassirou Hassane

 

  • Soumaila Hassane

 

  • Abdouljamal Alassane

 

They were charged for participation in an illegal demonstration and were sent to jail without trial. At the same time, the radio and television station – Radio et Télévision Labarai (RTL) was closed.

Civil society organisations in Nigeria have called for their immediate release and demanded a stop to the systematic harassment and serial arrest of civil society organisations and leaders in Niger;

The groups also want the 2018 budget reviewed, which has increased the austerity measures in Niger.

It also wants to draw attention to the significant decline of democratic culture in Niger due to the rise of authoritarianism and attack on the rule of law by President Issoufou.

1) Jibrin Ibrahim, Centre for Democracy and Development

2) Y. Z. Ya’u, Centre for Technology and Development

3) John Odah, Organisation of Trade Unions of West Africa

4) Auwal Musa Rafsanjani, CISLAC

5) Idayat Hassan, Centre for Democracy and Development

6) Ezenwa Nwagwu, Say No Campaign

7) Jaye Gaskiya, Protest to Power

8) Zikirullahi   Ibrahim, Resource Centre for Human Rights &Civic Education (CHRICED)

9) Okeke Anya, State of the Union  (SOTU)

10) Halima Nuhu, Zero Corruption Coalition (ZCC)

11) Olanrewaju Suraju, Civil Society Network Against Corruption (CSNAC)

12) Chioma Kanu, Accountability  Mechanism for Maternal New Born and Child Health in Nigeria (AMHiN)

13) Chinedu Bassey, Tax Justice ​and Governance Platform

14) Abubakar Siddique Mohammed, Centre for Democratic Research and Traning

15)  Dr. Abubakar Muazu Borno, Coalition for Democracy and Progress (BOCADEP)

16) Asmau Joda, Centre for Women and Adolescent Empowerment .

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