Comment on Zaria massacre by British High Commissioner on Twitter attracts mixed reactions

The UK High Commissioner in Nigeria, Mr. Paul Arkwright, has attracted a wide range of responses with his Twitter post on Zaria Massacre on the second year anniversary of the horrendous killings of unarmed citizens by fully armed Nigerian army.

Writingthrough his Twitter handle @PaulTArkwright, he twitted that:

@PaulTArkwright: It is two years since the #Zaria incident when some 350 Nigerians were killed by the Military. Since then there have been several investigations, reports and reccommendations. But a number of reccommentations remain to be implemented. We call for accountability on all sides.


Within hours of the tweet, there were several hundred retweets and likes of about equal proportions. What was perhaps much more interesting was the mixed reaction the tweet attracted in terms of replies. As at the time of compiling this report, there were over 70 replies to Mr. Arkwright’s tweet.

Quite a number of such replies appear to agree with the tweet. Notable one in that category include the popular public affairs commentator, Gimba Kakanda writing from Maiduguri using the handle @gimbakakanda, who replied that:

@gimbakakanda: The Shiites were so unfairly dealt with because they’re of no electoral value and yet unwanted by their politically powerful rivals. The government has only appealed to the sectarian sentiments of those with whom it shares a mutual hatred of the Shiites. #ZariaMassacre

Another reply seemingly in support of Mr. Arkwright was from one Mr. Andrew Fleming @Andrew007Uk, who replied that:

@Andrew007Uk: Remembered with much sadness. Share your sentiment and call. Nigeria remains in my prayers for very many reasons but this is one at the forefront.

One Dennis.Ag, who replied using the handle @denniskezeh wrote as a reply that:

@denniskezeh: The rogue govt of dictator Buhari must be forced to account for the killings of shiites in Zaria & the killings of unarmed pro Biafran agitators recently murdered by the Nigeria military at Nnamdi Kanu residence in Umuahia, Abia State.

In his own reply, one Martins, @martchu1ugo said:

@martchu1ugo: For once this man is talking sense. This British slave masters. Hope u wouldn’t  statement that will make people suffer more in this country tomorrow. @PaulTArkwright making sense to me for once. Well done sir!

On the other side, there were those who used their replies to criticise Mr. Arkwright. First was Serge Escaphini, using the twitter handle @ohis316 who wrote:

@ohis316:Accountability on all side? Sincerely trying to imagine how to hold unarmed women and children accountable for their own massacre.

Someone going by the name Keepitsimple @_KeepIt_Simple wrote:

@_KeepIt_Simple: What “both sides”? If citizens were killed in your country by security agencies would you be saying the same thing? Let’s call a spade please…

Twitting her reply, one Eugenia Barnett @JencaBenca said:

@JencaBenca: True, only think I find difficult in that statement is the fact that it’s not very telling, it’s quite avoiding the whole issue, don’t you think?

kola oni @kolaoni 

@kolaoni : ‘Both sides’ – which side is the other side here?

Gwilll @OvieborG replied:

@OvieborG: I respect you a lot Sir! But please try not to be like the rest. This is not an issue to attract likes and retweets on Twitter, it is an issue that you must use your good office to seek Justice for the dead and also the immediate release of EL_zazaky and his wife. 

Some criticisms were more direct. Usman Jato @usman_jato said:

@usman_jato: Let’s start from u, as d British high commissioner to Nigeria wat have u done to contribute and how did u do it? International community have a big role to play in every aspect of humanitarian justice.

ikenna @naijadawg

 …maybe you should be calling the Hague for criminal indictments against the person’s involved? Just a thought…

Okonkwo Frank Perez in his own reply said:
@OkonkwoPerezWhat about the southeast of Nigeria? Won’t you investigate that?
Ehy Ibezim  

@ehyibezim: There you go Mr. High Commissioner. We are not sure how the British govt relates to or punishes mass murderers & nobody believes Tony Blair is a private citizen.

Chinedu Onyeka
@edupeepy1 : Hypocrisy!! U and ur country knows the truth! U people kill people n cover it just to keep one Nigeria! #ZiariaMassacre #IPOBMassacre

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