Category: News


As the world marks today the World Day Against the use of the Death Penalty with the theme “Poverty and the death penalty” LEDAP reaffirms its position that the abolition of death penalty in law and practice should be the firm desire of the Nigerian government as death penalty is cruel and inhumane treatment, which has no place in modern society. LEDAP contends that the application of death penalty is discriminatory in Nigeria as it has become a punishment exclusive to the poor in society.

LEDAP is continually in legal battles with the federal and state governments in its quest to ensure that fundamental rights of citizens are safe-guarded and death penalty is abolished. Currently LEDAP has legal actions in court where it challenges the imposition of mandatory death sentences and the proposal of the federal and state governments to execute death row inmates. LEDAP urges state Governors not to sign any death warrants as it constitutes state murder. With high number of criminal convictions overturned on appeal, continued execution is risky as innocent people may be wrongfully killed.

LEDAP strongly believes that in its practical application death penalty is discriminatory as there is hardly any rich or influential person in society who is sentenced to death. LEDAP contends that the reason for the discriminatory outlook is due to the fact that the rich have the resources to settle the police or afford the best lawyers who ensure they are not convicted. LEDAP therefore takes the commemoration of the World Day Against Death Penalty, to re-live the experiences of the inmates saved from the gallows, inviting freed former death-row inmates to tell their stories in a media parley. It is LEDAP’s conclusion that poverty is a common factor to all prisoners on death row in Nigeria.

LEDAP beckons on the Government to ensure that it gives life rather than exercise eagerness in taking it away while it condemns the recommendation that prisoners on death row be executed as a means of decongesting the prisons. LEDAP believes that the government has a duty to protect and respect the sanctity of human life rather than supervising its termination and recommends a moratorium law be passed against executions in Nigeria.



Chinonye Obiagwu

National Coordinator

LEDAP Contemporary Slavery Project

On Tuesday July 4th 2017, the Legal Defence and Assistance Project (LEDAP) launched its Project on Contemporary Slavery by conducting an ‘Experts Seminar on Strategies to Address Contemporary Forms of Slavery’. This Project will begin both advocacy and grassroots work for advancement in the areas of Child Marriage, Child Labour and Trafficking in Persons. In presenting a Background Paper based on research conducted by LEDAP’s research assistants, the presenter highlighted that efforts to curb contemporary slavery in Nigeria require collaboration across board between NGOs, the government, international bodies and persons/bodies working to see the end of contemporary slavery in Nigeria and around the world. To download the extended Seminar Report and the Background Paper, please click the links below:

LEDAP Seminar Report- Contemporary Slavery

Background Paper on Contemporary Slavery



Escaping the Bonds of Trafficking

Imagine you are offered a new job in a foreign country, but when you arrive you are used as a sex slave. This happened to a 21-year-old Nigerian woman named Pamela — and is happening to thousands of women around the world. The UN Fund on Contemporary Forms of Slavery is helping Pamela and many other women rebuild their lives and obtain justice. See Pamela’s story on the OHCHR website here.


Experts Seminar On Contemporary Forms of Slavery

The Legal Defence and Assistance project is set to hold an ‘Experts Seminar to Address Contemporary Forms of Slavery” on the 4th of July 2017, in Abuja, Nigeria.

The Experts Seminar aims to address Child Marriage, Child Labour, and Trafficking in Persons in Nigeria by gathering experts to contribute to developing policy recommendations, and identify key stakeholders, as well as advocacy strategies to be implemented by LEDAP’s new Project on Contemporary Slavery.

The convening will launch the Project and create a network for potential collaborations in advocacy and grassroots work using the methods identified and developed by the experts, in collaboration with LEDAP.

Press Release: LEDAP Condemns Senate’s Decision To Summon Judges

LEDAP Condemns Senate’s Decision To Summon Judges

Channels Television.
Updated October 23, 2016

LEDAP, Senate, JudgesThe Legal Defence and Assistance Project (LEDAP) has condemned the plan by the Senate Committee on Judiciary to summon the judges who were recently arrested by the DSS.

LEDAP’s National Coordinator, Mr Chino Obiagwu, in a statement on Sunday, notes that the legislature has no oversight power over judicial officers under the constitutional principle of separation of powers in sections 4, 5 and 6 of the 1999 Constitution.

Mr Obiagwu explained that it is only the National Judicial Council (NJC) that has the power of control and discipline of judges and justices of superior courts in Nigeria.

“Any interference by the legislature or the executive into the conduct of judges in carrying out their judicial functions will amount to unlawful interference with the independence of the judiciary.

“The 1999 Constitution, unlike the legal framework of past military regimes, has consolidated the independence of the judiciary and established the NJC as the only body responsible for management of the judiciary,” he stated.

The statement further reads in part: “LEDAP is concerned that the recent raid and arrest of judges and justices by the DSS, and continued assault and raid on judges by other agencies of the executive, have the effect of opening up the judiciary to unlawful and unconstitutional interference and intimidation by other arms of government, the reason for which the Senate has the temerity to speak about inviting judicial officers for questioning.

“LEDAP will shortly approach the courts to seek orders restraining any such invitation or summon of the arrested judicial officers as it amounts to attempt to brow-beat and intimidate the judiciary.

“There are a lot of corruption issues and corrupt politicians in the legislature and executive which should preoccupy the Senators.

“The scandal arising from the padding of the budget, which has been going on for many years in the legislature with connivance of the executive, as well as bogus and secretive huge allowances and emoluments claimed by legislators are more damaging economic crimes against the Nigerian people that the Senate should address rather than intimidating few judges alleged to be corrupt.

“There are several court orders directing the National Assembly to disclose salaries and emoluments of its members, and details of constituency allowances claimed yearly by legislators. It has refused to obey these judgements of the courts.

“Nigerian legislators, adjudged as the most corrupt and most expensive in the world, has no legal or moral right to superintendent over alleged corruption in the judiciary.”

LEDAP called on the Nigerian Bar Association (NBA) to resist attempts by the executive and legislature “to control and manage the judiciary” as such situation will on the long run denigrate the judiciary and legal profession and threaten the rule of law.

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