Human rights activist, Omoyele Sowore has called for the arrest and prosecution of Ibrahim Agboola Gambari, Chief of Staff to President Muhammadu Buhari; Hameed Ibrahim Ali, Comptroller General of the Nigerian Customs Service and others for conniving with the Sani Abacha regime to murder Ken Saro-Wiwa, a playwright, environmental activist and Ogoni leader.
Saro-Wiwa and eight other Ogoni activists were tried by a secret military tribunal and executed by hanging on November 10, 1995, a tragic end to their non-violent campaign against the Royal Dutch Shell Company and the Nigerian government over the economic injustices and the pollution of Ogoniland that arose from oil exploitation.
Saro-Wiwa was accused, alongside the eight other Ogoni leaders, of responsibility for the murder of five Ogoni chiefs at a pro-government meeting.
In 1995, Gambari openly backed the killing of the Ogoni activist during the ruthless Abacha military regime.
Gambari had informed the United Nations that the killing of Saro-Wiwa was legal as it was done in line with the law and constitution of Nigeria.
The UN General Assembly had condemned the arbitrary execution of Saro-Wiwa after a flawed judicial process, emphasising that everyone charged with a penal offence had the right to be presumed innocent until proven guilty according to the law in a public trial with all guarantees necessary for defence.
But Gambari accused the UN General Assembly of dancing to the tune of some individuals trying to challenge the sovereignty of Nigeria.
He labelled Saro-Wiwa a “common criminal”, who had engaged in the murder of some Ogoni elders.
However, Sowore on Monday said some Nigerians, as well as Shell officials, connived with Abacha to carry out “these egregious historical crimes against humanity.”
The activist added that all those involved in the killing must be punished.
He said, “Ken Saro-Wiwa and 8 Ogoni activists weren’t just murdered by the Sani Abacha regime. Some Nigerians as well as Shell officials connived with Abacha to carry out these egregious historical crimes against humanity. We must commence the punishment of these errant characters.
“#ExonerateOgoni9: Arrest and prosecute, former NBA (Nigerian Bar Association) president JB Daudu, Customs CG, Hameed Ali and retired Chief Judge Ibrahim Auta for conniving with Abacha to murder Ken Saro-Wiwa and 8 other Ogoni activists!
“These despicable fellows served as judges and prosecutors on the Kangaroo Tribunal that maliciously convicted Ken and 8 others! Another despicable individual, Prof Ibrahim Gambari (Muhammadu Buhari’s current Chief of Staff) went on the international scene to defend these atrocities publicly. #RevolutionNow.”