Former US Ambassador to Nigeria, Mr John Campbell has revealed that human rights abuse is a major roadblock preventing Nigeria from receiving aid from the United States and its allies its fight against insecurity.
Speaking on Friday in Abuja during the maiden edition of ‘Grow Nigeria Conversation’ with the theme, ‘Reversing the Flourishing Economy of Kidnapping and Banditry: Immediate & long-term solutions’, Campbell said US laws prohibit the American government from providing technical expertise to security forces accused of human rights violations.
He, therefore, charged the Nigerian government to restore public confidence in the security forces, especially the police.
Campbell, who joined the event virtually, said, “The Nigerian government has to do its best to restore public confidence in the security forces, especially the police.
“Outside friends of Nigeria can provide technical expertise to the country in its fight against insecurity.
”However, under US law, we are prohibited from providing any technical expertise for security forces accused of human rights abuses.
“Human rights abuses are a huge barrier to a more cordial relationship between the US and the Nigerian security forces. And we know that addressing this barrier is a complex issue.
“There could be financial support to help build up the security forces; there could also be a transfer of technologies. If human rights abuses were to go away, the possibility of a deeper relationship is possible.”
Continuing, Campbell argued against the payment of ransom to bandits as a solution to the problem of kidnapping, describing it as illegal both in the US and Nigeria.
“Payment of ransom is illegal in the United States, but it could be extremely unpopular, particularly to those close to the victims of kidnapping. It is also illegal in Nigeria but common in the country,” he added.