All about the Oputa Panel (HRVIC)

Human Rights Investigation Violation Investigation Commission of Nigeria (HRVIC)

Timeline for Oputa Panel

Why the Oputa Panel Report recommendations have not been implemented
[Compilation of news reports October 16/17, 2002]

Lawyer Falana Gives Legal Support to Oputa Panel
[December 21, 2005]

The Full HRVIC Report in 10 PDF Files [Total Size: 24.58 MB]

NDM Press Release: Full Version of Oputa Panel Report
[January 1, 2005]

In solidarity with the Civil Society Forum (CSF) in Nigeria, the Nigerian Democratic Movement (NDM), a Washington-based pro-democracy organization since 1993, hereby releases unofficially the full Human Rights Violations Investigation Commission (HRVIC), popularly called the “Oputa Panel Report”,  as ten Portable Document Format (PDF) files......

Summary recommendations [ Size= 612 Kb]
Volume One - Chairman's Introduction, Origins of the Commission, etc. [461 KB]
Volume Two - International Context  [486 KB]
Volume Three -  Research Reports [1,021 KB]
Volume Four - Case-by-Case Records of Public Hearings [1.3 MB]
Volume Five - Briefs on Petition Memos [1.2 MB]
Volume Six - Reparation, Restitution and Compensation [6.0 MB]
Volume Seven -  Summary Conclusions and Recommendations [8.2 MB]
Appendix: List of Witnesses [1.4 MB]
Appendix: List of Exhibits [3.9 MB]

Download Adobe Reader from Here [15.9 MB]

To create a Compact Disc (CD) of the Oputa Panel Report, download the above 12 files (NDM Release + 10 Oputa Files + Adobe Reader); Total size of files on CD will be about 80 MB.

Post-Release Media Commentaries - after January 1, 2005

With Oputa Report, No Need for National Dialogue
Father George Ehusani [Sunday Punch; February 13, 2005]

The Oputa public sitting was some national dialogue. It was a major national dialogue that had brought some recommendations. If you read, in detail, you will discover that, perhaps, if we take that panel report seriously, we do not need to set up another dialogue, because it is either we have a full Sovereign National Conference or we stay with this kind of report and look at what it is saying.....

Reopen deaths of MKO, Kudirat, Dele Giwa, others; CSF releases Oputa panel’s report
[Punch, January 2, 2005]

Pre-Release Media Commentaries - before January 1, 2005

Oputa Panel Report: Matters Arising
[Guardian Editorial, December 19, 2004]

Kukah Tackes FG on Oputa Report
[Punch, December 12, 2004]

Fayemi of CDD: We'll Publish Original Oputa Report
[Independent, December 11, 2004]

Oputa Report: Dead and Buried?
[Vanguard, December 10, 2004]

Afenifere wants Oputa Report Released
[This Day, December 9, 2004]

"A Report in the Cooler" [The News Prologue to first unofficial release of Oputa Report, Nov. 2004]

Release Oputa Report - Kukah Urges FG
[This Day, Nov. 10, 2004]
A member of the dissolved Justice Chukwudifu Oputa Commission on Human Rights Abuses, Reverend Father Hassan Matthew Kukah, yesterday asked government to release the commission's report to prove government's sincerity to correcting the wrongs in the country.....

JODER to Release Oputa Panel Report
[This Day, September 26, 2003]
The Jounalists for Democratic Rights, (JODER), a pro-media rights group, is soon to release a comprehensive assessment of media coverage the Oputa Panel to Nigerian and Intemational audience. A statement signed by JODER's Chairman, Mr. Adewale Adeoye, stated that the report captured the strength and weaknesses of the media coverage of Nigeria's version of the post-military era of the truth and reconcilaition panel, commonly referred to as the Oputa Panel, set up by the Federal Govemment to assuage the pains of victims of human right violations...

'Disregard of Oputa Panel Report, cause of political violence'

[March 5, 2003]
..Some Nigerians who petitioned the Human Right Violations Investigation Commission (HRVIC) popularly known as Oputa Panel over human rights abuses have blamed the present spate of political violence on the Non-implementation of the panel's report....

Catholic Bishops to Obasanjo: Publish Oputa Panel Report Now
[This Day, September 15,, 2002]
President Olusegun Obasanjo was weekend, called upon by Catholic Bishops in Nigeria to publish as well as implement the report of the Justice Chukwudifu Oputa Human Rights Violation Investiga-tions Commission (HRVIC) which has been submitted to his administration....

Why I am in Court - IBB
[June 13, 2002]
FORMER military ruler, Gen. Ibrahim Babangida declared yesterday that he went to court to stop the implementation of the Oputa panel report because the death of Dele Giwa over which he was summoned had been politicised.....

Oputa Panel Submits Report, Recommends Compensation
[This Day, May 22, 2002]
The Human Rights Violation and Investigations Commission (HRVIC) has recommended compensations to victims of human rights abuses in Nigeria. Those to benefit include individuals, institutions and governments that suffered any form of abuses "under draconian years of military rule." These were the high points of the presentation of the interim report of HRVIC to President Olusegun Obasanjo yesterday. The interim report made of eight volumes and described as an "appetiser" yesterday by the chairman of the commission, Justice Chukwudifu Oputa was presented to Obasanjo at the State House, Abuja. Oputa said the main report would be submitted on May 28..........Breaking down the report, Oputa explained that volume one establishes the theoritical basis for setting up the commission; volume two alligns the work of the commission with the context of the human rights experience; volume three deals with the public hearing; volume four provides a compendium of research material by the panel on agitations of the various parts of the country and volume five which Oputa considers the most i mportant, deals with findings and recommendations. In volume six, the issue of rehabilitation and compensation is examined; volume seven contains the summary of everything in the report, capturing the Nigerian experience while volume eight serves as the conclusions...

Nigeria's "truth commission" too poor to finish work
[January 10, 2002]
A keenly awaited report by Nigeria's year-long Human Rights Violations Investigations Commission has been delayed because the commission has run out of money, an official said on Wednesday....

Obasanjo Files Defence Over Invasion of Kalakuta Republic
[The Guardian (Lagos) September 10, 2001]
A dreary chapter in the nation's annals may be revisited tomorrow at the Human Rights Violations Investigation Commission (HRVIC) as President Olusegun Obasanjo files his defence over the burning in 1978 of the famous Kalakuta Republic. The property was owned by family of the late afrobeat maestro, Fela Anikulapo-Kuti. The stage for probing revelations about the military invasion of the republic was set when Fela's younger brother, Dr. Beko Ransome-Kuti a human rights activist, filed a petition at the panel....

I won't appear before the Oputa Panel - Buhari
[Vanguard, August 12, 2001]
Former Head of State, Major-General Muhammadu Buhari (rtd), declared Friday he would not appear before the Human Rights Violation Investigations Commission (HRVIC) unless the law establishing it was reviewed.He gave the condition in an interview on the Hausa Service of Voice of America (VOA) monitored in Kaduna.

Nigeria's ex-military rulers under fire
[BBC, July 21, 2001]
Some Nigerians have been urging a commission investigating past human rights abuses to take a stronger stand against former military rulers. The Human Rights Violations Investigations Commission was set up by Nigerian President Olesegun Obasanjo in 1999, with a mandate to look back over a period of more than 30 years. Described by one Nigerian newspaper as the greatest show on earth, the commission is meant to help Nigeria come to terms with its past, looking at the most shameful episodes in the country's history and making the main protagonists accountable for their actions....

Who Killed Dele Giwa?"
[Newswatch, December 18, 2000]
Emerging facts now indicate that those who killed Giwa that afternoon of October 19, 1986, may never even be publicly known unless the federal government bows to pressures from well-meaning Nigerians to reorder a thorough investigation into the gruesome murder. The Oputa commission is to hear two petitions on Giwa's murder December 11. Newswatch had reported that the military made deliberate efforts to cover up and frustrate official investigations into how Giwa died.

Abacha's henchman al-Mustapha sings briefly about "Abubakar-Diya Coup" plot, the killing of Abiola, NADECO and other issues
[An account of Mustapha's testimony of November 27, 2000]

Nigerian Human Rights Commission to Start Hearing
[Reuters, October 22, 2000]

Suits against the HRVIC/Federal Government

NIGERIA: Babangida in court to stop editor's murder probe
[IRIN News, June 19, 2002]
A legal battle began on Tuesday between former Nigerian military ruler, General Ibrahim Babangida, and the government over a probe into an unsolved 16-year-old murder of a prominent journalist Dele Giwa, which occurred during Babangida's reign. Nigeria’s Human Rights Violations Investigation Commission (HRVIC) in its report to President Olusegun Obasanjo last month recommended the prosecution of Babangida and two former intelligence chiefs for the murder of Giwa by parcel bomb in his Lagos home on 19 October 1986...

IBB Battles Oputa Panel
Newswatch [December 1, 2002]
Many Nigerians who rushed to the Abuja High Court presided over by Justice Binta Murtala Nyako recently to listen to arguments from lawyers hired by former military president Ibrahim Babagida to stop implementation of the report of the Human Rights Violations Investigation Commission, HRVIC, presided over by Justice Chukwudifu Oputa went home disappointed. The matter was not heard...

IBB Vs. Oputa Panel: Supreme Court Rules January 31
[This Day (Lagos); November 1, 2002]

Oputa Panel: IBB Gets Court Leave
[This Day (Lagos); October 30, 2002]

IBB vs. Govt.: Court Adjourns Suit to October 22
{Daily Trust, July 22, 2002]
A Federal High Court in Abuja yesterday, adjourned to October 22, the suit instituted by the former military president, Ibrahim Babangida, against the Federal Government. Babangida and his ex-security chiefs, Brig. General Halilu Akilu, and Col. Kunle Togun, had gone to court to prevent the government from implementing the reports of the Human Rights Violations Investigation Commission (HRVIC).....

The Oputa Witch-Hunt
Mohammed Haruna [Daily Trust, June 19, 2002]

'Yoruba Has Persecuted the Yoruba'
Afenifere at Oputa Panel

No regrets for the Asaba massacre of Igbo - Haruna
[Vanguard, October 10, 2001]

Igbos Demand Eight Billion Dollar Compensation
[The Guardian (Lagos), July 26, 2001]

Rights Panel Meet
[UN IRIN, April 20, 2001 ]

Igbo Losses Counted at Oputa Panel
[Panafrican News Agency, December 20, 1999]


Oputa Panel: Matters Arising
by Collins Onyenze [Vanguard, August 30, 2004]
DID President Obasanjo and his administration set-up the Human Rights Violations Investigation Commission (HRVIC) determined not to implement the reports, or could they not help themselves? This is the question many meaningful Nigerians are asking. Nigerians who gave their time and efforts to the success of the commission must be worried that the President has kept quiet and allowing the Oputa Panel report gather dust in the archives...

SUNDAY MUSINGS: Why Government Should Release the Okigbo and Oputa Panels’ Reports – A Question of Credibility
Mobolaji Aluko [April 25, 2004]

There have been several attempts in the past to provide some measure of accountability, but two are particularly significant: these are supposed to have been documented in the Okigbo Panel Report of 1994, instituted during the Abacha regime, that details how our oil money was spent during the 16-year period 1985 - 1991; and the Oputa Panel Report of 2002, instituted under the current Obasanjo civilian administration, that details how our human rights were violated during the 33-year period 1966 - 1999. Ironically, neither report has been made public: in fact, the Okigbo report was recently declared “missing” from government archives, and as far as the Oputa report is concerned, the government has not indicated what it wishes to do with the eight-volume document that was given to it back in May 2002 in broad daylight...

Where is the Oputa Commissions's Report?
Sonny Onyegbula [Vanguard, February 13, 2004]
The Oputa Commission submitted its report to President Olusegun Obasanjo on 28 May 2002 and most surprisingly 21 months after the government has neither released the report to Nigerians nor implemented the recommendations of the Commission. Nigerians are now asking where the Oputa Commission's report is. Is the report going to go the way the report of other Commissions in the past have gone? To the latter question, the answer should be a categorical No. Nigerians as a people should never allow the Oputa Commission's report to continue to gather dust in some office somewhere or its recommendations to be sacrificed on the alter of political exigencies or lack of political will...

Human Rights Violations Gone with the Wind
[Analysis - This Day, October 16, 2002]

Oputa's Unfinished Business
by Sam Nda-Isaiah [Daily Trust, June 9, 2002]

Between Substance and Symbolism
by Louis Odion [ThisDay, May 31, 2002]

Insight Into Oputa Panel's Report: As Oputa Panel Submits Reports
by Malachy Uzendu [Daily Champion (Lagos), May 25, 2002]
THE much-awaited report of the Human Rights Violations Investigation Commission (HRVIC) will be handed over to President Olusegun Obasanjo on Tuesday. No doubt, the Oputa panel's report is eagerly being awaited by Nigerians not because the report is capable of addressing all aspects of human rights abuses in the country, but Nigerians want to have a pedestal upon which they can gauge what to do and what to expect, especially as the nation approaches the real transition, which is from civil to another civil rule...

Nigeria: Time for Justice and Accountability
Amnesty International [December 21, 2000]