Nigerian activist and human rights champion, Aisha Yesufu, has called out the outgoing British High Commissioner in Nigeria, Catriona Laing, for her complicity in Nigeria’s 2023 flawed polls, describing her “endorsement’’ of the polls as far from the reality on the ground.
In a video obtained by Persecondnews, Yesufu blasted the High Commissioner for finding it “fascinating that people were killed, injured and harmed in the last elections’’
The message titled, “We heard you, Congratulations Catriona’’, Yesufu said: “The same thing that you will not accept in your own country you come to our country and you sit down , you were fascinated by an election that is marred by violence.
“They heard you, yes, they heard you. You came out to tell us that the 2023 elections you found it fascinating; you found it fascinating; you found it fascinating that people were killed; you found it fascinating that people were injured and harmed.
“You found it fascinating that results were being changed. You found it fascinating that violence was brought into the election. They have heard you loud and clear.
“And the gubernatorial election they have unleashed more violence, more people have been killed, harmed and disenfranchised. More people have been refused to perform their civic duty.
“Because of course it is a horror film you can watch live happening.
“Again and again and again, we have said this double standard, this two-face standard we do not want it. You sit in your pretty country you have election where people are free to go out and vote where nobody is afraid for their lives, where nobody is killed when they go out for election.
“And then you come to our place you accept the minimum standard …Oh a few are being killed. Those few are not part of your family, they are not your citizens.’’
On the grants from European countries to Nigeria and Africa, Yesufu said the country and the continent do not need the grants she described as handouts.
“We do not need handouts from you; we do not need handouts from these nations. You sit down you constantly want our country, our continent to be down so that you can say, Oh we sent them 5 million pounds for the elections tax payers money.
“Do we look like we need 5 million pounds, does Nigeria look like it needs 5 million pounds? We have said you should stop giving enabling environment to people who looted our nation dry and take them to your places and invest them there.
“There must be minimum standard. We are sitting down there people are being killed because they want to exercise their civic duty and come to tell us that we should be proud of an election that is so marred with violence, killings and vote fraud.’’
Meanwhile, Mr Richard Montgomery has been named as the new British High Commissioner in Nigeria. His appointment was announced by the United Kingdom Government on March 7, 2023.
Persecondnews recalls that Montgomery had served as the Counsellor (Development), and Head of Office, Department for International Development (DFID), Abuja from 2009 to 2013.
He holds a Ph.D in Social Anthropology from the University of Cambridge alongside other research –related qualifications from GKW Consult Mannheim and Manchester University.
He is expected to take office in April 2023.
Montgomery replaces Catriona Laing who has been the UK’s representative in Nigeria since 2018.