Category: Uncategorized

NEWSLETTER FOR 30TH JULY- 3RD AUGUST 2018

 

HELLO,
Welcome to another edition LEDAP Nigeria’s Weekly Newsletter which keeps you up to date on the latest Human Rights News and updates in the law, What we are up to and Upcoming Events.
16th-20th July 2018 2018

“Human rights are women’s rights and women’s rights are human rights.”

— Hillary Clinton

NEWS

Defected Senators Must Resign From Senate – LEDAP
The Legal Defence and Assistance Project in a Press Release, signed by the National Coordinator, Mr. Chino Obiagwu has stated that according to Section 68(1)(g) of the Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, any Legislator defecting to another party, must resign, otherwise such legislator will be acting unlawfully and, has no right of vote at the National Assembly. Read more

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Gunmen Attack Mosque, Kill Four, Injure Eight in Zamfara

Some gunmen have attacked a mosque at Kawddi Village in Zamfara State, leaving four persons dead and eight others injured. According to Channels Television, the incident happened at about 8 pm in Zurmi Local Government Area of the State. Read more

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Group Petitions National Human Rights Commission over Alleged Soldiers’ Brutality

The Network of Police Reform in Nigeria has petitioned the National Human Rights Commission over the alleged infliction of physical injuries and extortion of five civilians by some soldiers in Aba, Abia State. Read more

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Buhari, INEC Commit to Credible Poll

Delivering a keynote address at the 20th anniversary celebration of the International Criminal Court (ICC) at The Hague, Netherlands, July 17, Buhari said his administration would deploy every power within its reach to conduct free, fair and violence-free polls in 2019. Read more

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Heads of United Nations Counter-Terrorism Bodies Conclude Joint Visit to Nigeria

Mr. Vladimir Voronkov, Under-Secretary-General of the United Nations Office of Counter-Terrorism (UNOCT), and Ms. Michèle Coninsx, Assistant Secretary-General and Executive Director of the Counter-Terrorism Committee Executive Directorate (CTED), concluded a joint visit to Nigeria at the invitation of the Government. Read more

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NHRC to Investigate Alleged Fraudulent Activities in IDP Camps

The National Human Rights Commission (NHRC) says it will investigate all genuine cases of sharp practices at Internally Displaced Persons (IDPs) camps in the country. Read more

Create Human Rights-Friendly Business Environment, Govt Urged

A National Business and Human Rights Round table on ‘The role of Governance Stakeholders Engagement on Business and Human Rights’, organised by the Global Rights, a Civil Society Organisation (CSO) in partnership with National Human Rights Commission (NHRC), was held on the in a bid to discuss and avert business-related human rights infringement in Nigeria. Read more

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SERAP takes Senate to UN over Press Council Bill

The Socio-Economic Rights and Accountability Project (SERAP), has petitioned Mr. David Kaye, Special Rapporteur on the promotion and protection of the right to freedom of opinion and expression to press the Senate President Bukola Saraki and the Nigerian Senate to withdraw a bill which “aims to undermine constitutionally and internationally recognized media freedom in the country”. Read more

Cameroon Violence Needs Urgent Investigation – UN Rights Chief

The UN High Commissioner for Human Rights, Zeid Al Hussein, said persistent reports of grave human rights abuses in Cameroon must be investigated by the Cameroonian authorities urgently. Amid the backdrop of protests in the English-speaking north-west and south-west regions of the country that escalated in late 2017 into clashes between state military forces and armed groups, Zeid condemned an ambush on government motorcade that took place earlier this month. Read more

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Nigerians Forced out by Boko Haram Return to Ruins and Continuing Risk

Thousands of people who fled Boko Haram have been sent to unsafe areas by a government trying to create the impression that it has returned security to Nigeria’s north-east, ahead of next year’s presidential election. Read more

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UNHCR Releases Quarterly Report on Regional Refugee Response Plan

The Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugee has released its refugee response plan for April to June 2018. The report highlights that the number of security incidents in the Lake Chad Basin in the first quarter did not increase in the second quarter, however, civilian causalities in the second quarter increased as compared to the first quarter. Read more

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Anti-slavery App will Help Users Spot Potential Victims of Labour Exploitation

A leading anti-slavery charity is preparing to launch an app that will help users identify signs of modern-day slavery and report suspicions to a confidential helpline. Read more

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Guterres Raises Alarm Over UN Cash Crunch

UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres warned Thursday of a serious cash shortfall at the United Nations, telling staff in a message that cost-cutting measures are in store. Guterres said the cash crunch was caused primarily by the failure of UN member states to pay their dues on time, adding that he had asked countries to quickly pay their share of the UN budget. Read more

 

A Report on the 2018 IPI World Congress

Under the title “Why Good Journalism Matters: Quality Media for Strong Societies”, the 2018 IPI World Congress was held in Abuja, Nigeria, from June 21 to 23, 2018. Read more

Nigeria Gets New Consul-General in New York

A new Consul-General, Benaoyagha Okoyen, has assumed duty at the Consulate-General office of Nigeria in New York. Read more

 

OPINION

The Death Penalty is an Abomination – Sajid Javid Must not Condone It

“You can’t be opposed in principle to the death penalty except when it turns out to be inconvenient; you can’t be in favour of human rights only so long as they apply to likable people.” Read more

Task of Ethiopia’s New Leader: End Torture

“Though the reforms he has introduced are promising, the prime minister has yet to tackle one of the biggest obstacles to lasting change — the lack of accountability for serious abuses, notably the widespread use of torture.” Read more

More than words: Why HIV Responses must put Human Rights Centre Stage

“Those who are most vulnerable to HIV infection stop accessing life-saving treatment or reporting human rights violations due to fear, stigma, discrimination and the possibility they may face prosecution.” Read more

 

Shall There Be Strings Attached to Humanitarian Aid?

“Following the ‘strings attached’ approach, the UK Government could do more to engage in a constructive dialogue with the Nigerian government to ensure that the Nigerian government does more to protect the affected communities. Read more

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Fundamental Human Rights Violation

The issue of human rights denial is not one that should be handled with kid gloves, it goes beyond condemning the acts that amount to such human rights breach, the law needs to go further to ensure that the fundamental human rights of her citizens are not violated. Read more

 

LEDAP@WORK

LEDAP Anti-Torture Project to Commence Training in Yobe State


Training of Police Officers in Yobe State on 31st July 2018.

The Anti-Torture Project will commenced the training of 60 police officers in Yobe State on torture prevention strategies, human rights and sexual and gender based violence norms. The training takes place from the 31st July to 1st August 2018. For live updates on the training follow the project on Twitter, Facebook and Instagram and follow the conversation using #stoptorture9ja

LEDAP Takes Files Contempt Proceedings
Based on LEDAP’s recent court judgment gotten at the Federal High Court in Suit No: FHC/ABJ/CS/979/15 between: LEDAP V Joint Admission and Matriculation Board (JAMB), The Minister of Education and the National Universities Commission (NUC), wherein the court held that only the Joint Admission and Matriculation Board (JAMB) can conduct matriculation examinations and give admissions into tertiary institutions. LEDAP has filed contempt proceedings at the Federal High Court against the defendants in this suit asking the Court to find the defendants guilty of contempt.

LEDAP Offers Technical Assistance to Yobe Judiciary on ACJ Bill

LEDAP recently held a 3 day technical workshop in Yobe state to provide assistance for the preparation and adoption of the Administration of Criminal Justice bill in order to implement the Administration of Criminal Justice Act in the State. Participants at the workshop included the Justice Reform Committee, the Chief Judge, Speaker and Members of the House of Assembly, Grand Kadis, Judges, Court Registrars, Magistrates, Police personnel, Prison Officers, and CSOs. The committee has prepared the final draft bill based on the output of the workshop. The draft was reviewed in Kaduna on 28th & 29th of July.

LEDAP, National Judicial Institute, and AfricaLii commence Nigeria Legal Information Institute(NigeriaLii)

Nigeria Legal Information Institute(NigeriaLii) is aimed at bringing legal materials, all laws and case decisions in Nigeria free of charge to the public. The official launch is coming up soon but the NigeriaLii portal currently contains several thousands of case decisions, statutes, rules of court, and other legal materials. Visit the NigeriaLii website here to read the most recent court judgments.

PeepIntoTheLaw

Court Sentences killers of Benue Catholic priest, Fr. John Adeyi to Death by Hanging

Justice Aondover Kakaan of a Makurdi High Court on Wednesday, convicted and sentenced Suleiman Goma and Haruna Idi to death by hanging for the murder of Rev. Fr Alexandra Adeyi. Read more

Court Orders Dangote To Pay 157.5 Million For Refusal To Honour Term Of Settlement Agreement

A High Court sitting at Onitsha presided over by Hon. Justice MNO Okonkwo has delivered a Landmark Judgment wherein it ordered Dangote Cement Plc to pay 157.5 Million Naira as cumulative judgment sum for refusal to honour term of settlement agreement voluntarily entered into by it. Read more

Free Basic Education is an Enforceable Right: Legal Defence and Assistance Project (LEDAP) GTE & LTD V Federal Ministry of Education & Anor

In the instant case of LEDAP v Federal PMinistry of Education & Anor, the Federal High Court sitting at Abuja held that that failure to adopt and implement free, compulsory and Universal Primary education and free junior secondary education is a breach of the constitutional obligation of the government. Read the full judgement on the Nigerialii website here.

 

EVENTS

Paris Peace Forum – Participate in the call for projects

The Paris Peace Forum is a platform for discussion and debate, the Forum will be a place for sharing experiences and innovative solutions bringing together all governance stakeholders The aim is to drive forward governance projects by showcasing them, using them as a basis for debates in various formats and promoting networking between project developers and relevant decision makers. If you wish to put forward a governance project, the Paris Peace Forum will be a unique opportunity to present and drive forward your initiative. For a chance to be one of the 150 projects chosen by the selection committee submit your project online: https://parispeaceforum.org/project-leaders/. Submissions close on 30 August.

2018 PALU ANNUAL CONFERENCE AND GENERAL ASSEMBLY

The Pan African Lawyers Union (PALU) is holding its 9thAnnual Conference in Tunis, Tunisia from 27 to 29 September, 2018. To register for the conference contact the PALU Secretariat at secretariat@lawyersofafrica.org, or via telephone +255 (27) 254-3192.

 

Call for Reports For 29th session of the Committee for the Protection of the Rights of All Migrant Workers and Members of Their Families (CMW)

The Committee is calling on representatives of national and international CSOs to provide country-specific information on issues relevant to the implementation of the Convention by the State parties under consideration. Deadline for submission is 13th August 2018. Read more

Tenth Session of Ad Hoc Committee of the Human Rights Council on the Elaboration of Complementary Standards

The 10th session of the committee has been rescheduled and will hold from the 8th to 19th of October 2018 in Geneva. Read more

The Social Forum of the Human Rights Council

The Social Forum is an annual three-day meeting convened by the Human Rights Council. It is a unique space for open and interactive dialogue between civil society actors, representatives of Member States, and intergovernmental organizations, on a theme chosen by the Council each year. This year’s Social Forum will hold from the 1st to 3rd October 2018 in Geneva. Read more

Legal Empowerment Leadership Course 2018


Applications are now open for the 4th edition of the annual Legal Empowerment Leadership Course. The course is a collaboration between the CEU’s School of Public Policy, the Open Society Justice Initiative,Namati, and the Robert L. Bernstein Institute for Human Rights at New York University School of Law. The course will hold from the 2nd to 7th of December. Find out more here

IDRC Research Awards 2018 for Research Internships

The International Development Research Center Research award recipients will join IDRC for a one-year paid program to undertake research on the topic they have submitted, and will receive hands-on experience in research and program management and support, grant administration. The award is open to Canadians, permanent residents of Canada, and citizens of developing countries pursuing a master’s or a doctoral degree at a recognized university OR who have completed a master’s or a doctoral degree at a recognized university. The deadline is 5th Spetember 2018. Read more

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NEWSLETTER FOR 23RD JULY- 27TH JULY 2018

 

HELLO,
Welcome to another edition LEDAP Nigeria’s Weekly Newsletter which keeps you up to date on the latest Human Rights News and updates in the law, What we are up to and Upcoming Events.
16th-20th July 2018 2018

“It is in your hands to make the world a better place.” 

—Nelson Mandela

NEWS   

Defected Senators Must Resign From Senate – LEDAP
The Legal Defence and Assistance Project in a Press Release, signed by the National Coordinator, Mr. Chino Obiagwu has stated that according to Section 68(1)(g) of the Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, any Legislator defecting to another party, must resign, otherwise such legislator will be acting unlawfully and, has no right of vote at the National Assembly. Read more

k

Gunmen Attack Mosque, Kill Four, Injure Eight in Zamfara

Some gunmen have attacked a mosque at Kawddi Village in Zamfara State, leaving four persons dead and eight others injured. According to Channels Television, the incident happened at about 8 pm in Zurmi Local Government Area of the State. Read more

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Group Petitions National Human Rights Commission over Alleged Soldiers’ Brutality

The Network of Police Reform in Nigeria has petitioned the National Human Rights Commission over the alleged infliction of physical injuries and extortion of five civilians by some soldiers in Aba, Abia State. Read more

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Buhari, INEC Commit to Credible Poll

Delivering a keynote address at the 20th anniversary celebration of the International Criminal Court (ICC) at The Hague, Netherlands, July 17, Buhari said his administration would deploy every power within its reach to conduct free, fair and violence-free polls in 2019. Read more

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Heads of United Nations Counter-Terrorism Bodies Conclude Joint Visit to Nigeria

Mr. Vladimir Voronkov, Under-Secretary-General of the United Nations Office of Counter-Terrorism (UNOCT), and Ms. Michèle Coninsx, Assistant Secretary-General and Executive Director of the Counter-Terrorism Committee Executive Directorate (CTED), concluded a joint visit to Nigeria at the invitation of the Government. Read more

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NHRC to Investigate Alleged Fraudulent Activities in IDP Camps

The National Human Rights Commission (NHRC) says it will investigate all genuine cases of sharp practices at Internally Displaced Persons (IDPs) camps in the country. Read more

Create Human Rights-Friendly Business Environment, Govt Urged

A National Business and Human Rights Round table on ‘The role of Governance Stakeholders Engagement on Business and Human Rights’, organised by the Global Rights, a Civil Society Organisation (CSO) in partnership with National Human Rights Commission (NHRC), was held on the  in a bid to discuss and avert business-related human rights infringement in Nigeria. Read more

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SERAP takes Senate to UN over Press Council Bill

The Socio-Economic Rights and Accountability Project (SERAP), has petitioned Mr. David Kaye, Special Rapporteur on the promotion and protection of the right to freedom of opinion and expression to press the Senate President Bukola Saraki and the Nigerian Senate to withdraw a bill which “aims to undermine constitutionally and internationally recognized media freedom in the country”. Read more

Cameroon Violence Needs Urgent Investigation – UN Rights Chief

The UN High Commissioner for Human Rights, Zeid Al Hussein, said persistent reports of grave human rights abuses in Cameroon must be investigated by the Cameroonian authorities urgently. Amid the backdrop of protests in the English-speaking north-west and south-west regions of the country that escalated in late 2017 into clashes between state military forces and armed groups, Zeid condemned an ambush on government motorcade that took place earlier this month. Read more

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Nigerians Forced out by Boko Haram Return to Ruins and Continuing Risk

Thousands of people who fled Boko Haram have been sent to unsafe areas by a government trying to create the impression that it has returned security to Nigeria’s north-east, ahead of next year’s presidential election. Read more

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UNHCR Releases Quarterly Report on Regional Refugee Response Plan 

The Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugee has released its refugee response plan for April to June 2018. The report highlights that the number of security incidents in the Lake Chad Basin in the first quarter did not increase in the second quarter, however, civilian causalities in the second quarter increased as compared to the first quarter. Read more

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Anti-slavery App will Help Users Spot Potential Victims of Labour Exploitation

A leading anti-slavery charity is preparing to launch an app that will help users identify signs of modern-day slavery and report suspicions to a confidential helpline. Read more

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Guterres Raises Alarm Over UN Cash Crunch

UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres warned Thursday of a serious cash shortfall at the United Nations, telling staff in a message that cost-cutting measures are in store. Guterres said the cash crunch was caused primarily by the failure of UN member states to pay their dues on time, adding that he had asked countries to quickly pay their share of the UN budget. Read more

 

A Report on the 2018 IPI World Congress

Under the title “Why Good Journalism Matters: Quality Media for Strong Societies”, the 2018 IPI World Congress was held in Abuja, Nigeria, from June 21 to 23, 2018. Read more

Nigeria Gets New Consul-General in New York

A new Consul-General, Benaoyagha Okoyen, has assumed duty at the Consulate-General office of Nigeria in New York. Read more

 

OPINION 

The Death Penalty is an Abomination – Sajid Javid Must not Condone It

“You can’t be opposed in principle to the death penalty except when it turns out to be inconvenient; you can’t be in favour of human rights only so long as they apply to likable people.” Read more

Task of Ethiopia’s New Leader: End Torture

“Though the reforms he has introduced are promising, the prime minister has yet to tackle one of the biggest obstacles to lasting change — the lack of accountability for serious abuses, notably the widespread use of torture.” Read more

More than words: Why HIV Responses must put Human Rights Centre Stage

“Those who are most vulnerable to HIV infection stop accessing life-saving treatment or reporting human rights violations due to fear, stigma, discrimination and the possibility they may face prosecution.” Read more

 

Shall There Be Strings Attached to Humanitarian Aid?

“Following the ‘strings attached’ approach, the UK Government could do more to engage in a constructive dialogue with the Nigerian government to ensure that the Nigerian government does more to protect the affected communities. Read more

k

Fundamental Human Rights Violation

The issue of human rights denial is not one that should be handled with kid gloves, it goes beyond condemning the acts that amount to such human rights breach, the law needs to go further to ensure that the fundamental human rights of her citizens are not violated. Read more

 

LEDAP@WORK 

LEDAP Anti-Torture Project to Commence Training in Yobe State


Training of Police Officers in Yobe State on 31st July 2018.

The Anti-Torture Project will commenced the training of 60 police officers in Yobe State on torture prevention strategies, human rights and sexual and gender based violence norms. The training takes place from the 31st July to 1st August 2018. For live updates on the training follow the project on Twitter, Facebook and Instagram and follow the conversation using #stoptorture9ja

LEDAP Takes Files Contempt Proceedings
Based on LEDAP’s recent court judgment gotten at the Federal High Court  in Suit No: FHC/ABJ/CS/979/15 between: LEDAP V Joint Admission and Matriculation Board (JAMB), The Minister of Education and the National Universities Commission (NUC), wherein the court held that only the Joint Admission and Matriculation Board (JAMB) can conduct matriculation examinations and give admissions into tertiary institutions. LEDAP has filed contempt proceedings at the Federal High Court against the defendants in this suit asking the Court to find the defendants guilty of contempt.

LEDAP Offers Technical Assistance to Yobe Judiciary on ACJ Bill

LEDAP recently held a 3 day technical workshop in Yobe state to provide assistance for the preparation and adoption of the  Administration of Criminal Justice  bill in order to implement the Administration of Criminal Justice Act in the State. Participants at the workshop included the Justice Reform Committee, the Chief Judge, Speaker and Members of the House of Assembly, Grand Kadis, Judges, Court Registrars, Magistrates, Police personnel, Prison Officers, and CSOs. The committee has prepared the final draft bill based on the output of the workshop. The draft was reviewed in Kaduna on 28th & 29th of July.

LEDAP, National Judicial Institute, and AfricaLii commence Nigeria Legal Information Institute(NigeriaLii) 

Nigeria Legal Information Institute(NigeriaLii) is aimed at bringing legal materials, all laws and case decisions in Nigeria free of charge to the public. The official launch is coming up soon but the NigeriaLii portal currently contains several thousands of case decisions, statutes, rules of court, and other legal materials. Visit the NigeriaLii website here to read the most recent court judgments.

PeepIntoTheLaw   

Court Sentences killers of Benue Catholic priest, Fr. John Adeyi to Death by Hanging

Justice Aondover Kakaan of a Makurdi High Court on Wednesday, convicted and sentenced Suleiman Goma and Haruna Idi to death by hanging for the murder of Rev. Fr Alexandra Adeyi. Read more

Court Orders Dangote To Pay 157.5 Million For Refusal To Honour Term Of Settlement Agreement

A High Court sitting at Onitsha presided over by Hon. Justice MNO Okonkwo has delivered a Landmark Judgment wherein it ordered Dangote Cement Plc to pay 157.5 Million Naira as cumulative judgment sum for refusal to honour term of settlement agreement voluntarily entered into by it. Read more

Free Basic Education is an Enforceable Right: Legal Defence and Assistance Project (LEDAP) GTE & LTD V Federal Ministry of Education & Anor

In the instant case of LEDAP v Federal PMinistry of Education & Anor, the Federal High Court sitting at Abuja held that that failure to adopt and implement free, compulsory and Universal Primary education and free junior secondary education is a breach of the constitutional obligation of the government. Read the full judgement  on the Nigerialii website here.

 

EVENTS  

Paris Peace Forum – Participate in the call for projects

The Paris Peace Forum is a platform for discussion and debate, the Forum will be a place for sharing experiences and innovative solutions bringing together all governance stakeholders The aim is to drive forward governance projects by showcasing them, using them as a basis for debates in various formats and promoting networking between project developers and relevant decision makers. If you wish to put forward a governance project, the Paris Peace Forum will be a unique opportunity to present and drive forward your initiative. For a chance to be one of the 150 projects chosen by the selection committee submit your project online: https://parispeaceforum.org/project-leaders/. Submissions close on 30 August.

2018 PALU ANNUAL CONFERENCE AND GENERAL ASSEMBLY

The Pan African Lawyers Union (PALU) is holding its 9thAnnual Conference in Tunis, Tunisia from 27 to 29 September, 2018. To register for the conference contact the PALU Secretariat at secretariat@lawyersofafrica.org, or via telephone +255 (27) 254-3192.

 

Call for Reports For 29th session of the Committee for the Protection of the Rights of All Migrant Workers and Members of Their Families (CMW)

The Committee is calling on representatives of national and international CSOs to provide country-specific information on issues relevant to the implementation of the Convention by the State parties under consideration. Deadline for submission is 13th August 2018. Read more

Tenth Session of Ad Hoc Committee of the Human Rights Council on the Elaboration of Complementary Standards

The 10th session of the committee has been rescheduled and will hold from the 8th to 19th of October 2018 in Geneva. Read more

The Social Forum of the Human Rights Council

The Social Forum is an annual three-day meeting convened by the Human Rights Council. It is a unique space for open and interactive dialogue between civil society actors, representatives of Member States, and intergovernmental organizations, on a theme chosen by the Council each year. This year’s Social Forum will hold from the 1st to 3rd October 2018 in Geneva. Read more

Legal Empowerment Leadership Course 2018


Applications are now open for the 4th edition of the annual Legal Empowerment Leadership Course. The course is a collaboration between the CEU’s School of Public Policy, the Open Society Justice Initiative,Namati, and the Robert L. Bernstein Institute for Human Rights  at New York University School of Law. The course will hold from the 2nd to 7th of December. Find out more here

IDRC Research Awards 2018 for Research Internships

The International Development Research Center Research award recipients will join IDRC for a one-year paid program to undertake research on the topic they have submitted, and will receive hands-on experience in research and program management and support, grant administration. The award is open to Canadians, permanent residents of Canada, and citizens of developing countries pursuing a master’s or a doctoral degree at a recognized university OR who have completed a master’s or a doctoral degree at a recognized university. The deadline is 5th Spetember 2018Read more

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LEDAP THREATENS SUIT AGAINST NATIONAL ASSEMBLY DEFECTORS

The Legal Defence and Assistance Project (LEDAP) has threatened to sue 15 members of the All Progressive Congress (APC) senators in National Assembly who defected to Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), if they fail to resign.

In a statement signed by the National Coordinator, LEDAP, Mr. Chinonye Obiagwu, the group said its position is informed by the provisions of section 68 (1)(g) of the 1999 constitution of Nigeria, as amended.

The section provides that any legislator who defects from the party, which sponsored his election to the National Assembly, where there was no division in the party, must vacate his seat in the National Assembly.

“The Supreme Court has acknowledged this section of the constitution in the case of Hon. Ifedayo Abegunde v. the Ondo state house of assembly SC.643/2014.

“The principles enunciated by the Court in the Fedeco v Goni supra and AG Federation v Abubakar (supra), are to the effect that only such fractionalization, fragmentation, splintering or “division” that makes it impossible or impracticable for a political party to function as such will, by virtue of the proviso to Section 68(1) (g), justify a person’s defection to another party and the retention of his seat for the unexpired term in the house in spite of the defection,” the group said.

Therefore LEDAP insisted that any legislator defecting to another party, must resign, otherwise such legislator will be acting unlawfully and, has no right of vote at the National Assembly.

His words: “Thus, all motions or bills passed by the National Assembly in which such legislator participated in the debate or voted in the passage are null and void.

“The National Assembly as the lawmakers of the nation must obey the law. If these legislators fail to resign, LEDAP will seek legal action to nullify their continued sitting in the upper chambers and to nullify all bills and motions in which they participated or voted.

 

Culled from TheGuardianNewspaper

NEWSLETTER FOR 28TH May – 1ST June 2018

 

HELLO,
Welcome to another edition LEDAP Nigeria’s Weekly Newsletter which keeps you up to date on the latest Human Rights News and updates in the law, What we are up to and Upcoming Events.
21st–25th May 2018

“Human rights are not only violated by terrorism, repression or assassination, but also by unfair economic structures that creates huge inequalities.” – 

Pope Francis

NEWS   

LEDAP Seeks to Reduce Incidences of Torture, Training of Police officers
Buoyed by the desire to reduce the incidences of torturing suspects in Nigeria, the Legal Defence and Assistance Project (LEDAP) has commenced the training of police officers in Lagos. The training, which is in partnership with the United Nations Democracy Funds (UNDF) and National Committee Against Torture (NCAT) is christened, ‘Community Mobilization Against Tortured’. Read more

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LEDAP Warns Institutions against Post -UTME Screening, says Court Order Subsists

The Legal Defence and  Assistance Project (LEDAP) has warned managers of the nation’s tertiary institutions against conducting the Post – Unified Tertiary Matriculation Examination (UTME), warning that there’s a subsisting order of the court against the exercise. Read more

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A Minute of Silence for Victims of Nigeria’s Epidemic of Violence

Nigerian civil society groups declared Monday, 28th May 2018 a national day of mourning and remembrance to honour the victims of violence across the country. The observation of a minute of silence  was to call attention to the inadequate response of Nigerian security agencies to the epidemic of violence, a response that’s been criticized for being  slow and inefficient. Read more 

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Innocent Idibia, Oby Ezekwesili, others march against Violent Killings in Nigeria

Nigerian artiste, 2Face Idibia, former minister of education, Oby Ezekwesili and human rights lawyer, Chidi Odinkalu joined other Nigerians to march against violent killings across the country. The peaceful walk was organised by the  Civil Society Joint Nigeria Crisis Action Committee (JN-CAC) to honour and mourn those who have been killed in recent times in the country. Read more

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Demand Justice for Abused Survivors of Boko Haram

Thousands of women and girls have survived Boko Haram only to face attacks and abuse from the Nigerian security forces who claim to be rescuing them. A group of displaced women called the Knifar Movement are campaigning for justice and for their husbands to be released. The group submitted detailed testimony to a Presidential Investigative Panel about the violations that they faced but the report is yet to be released. Amnesty International is calling on your support to put pressure on the president to release the report. To support the call for the release of the report, sign the petition here

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Ireland Votes by Landslide to Legalise Abortion

Ireland has voted by a landslide to repeal its near-total ban on abortion, an extraordinary victory for women’s rights that seals the country’s transformation from bastion of religious conservatism to one of Europe’s most tolerant democracies. Read more

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Gender Pay Gap Costs Global Economy $160tn, says World Bank study

Gender equality would enrich the global economy by an estimated $160tn (£120tn) if women were earning as much as men in the workplace, a study by the World Bank has found. Read more

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Shiite Killings in Nigeria: U.S knocks FG over failure to act on report indicting troops

The United States in its International Religious Freedom Report for 2017 has faulted the Nigerian government for failing to act on a report indicting the Nigerian Army on the clash between soldiers and members of the Islamic Movement. The report was released on 29th May by the U.S Department of State’s Bureau of Democracy, Human Rights, and Labour. View the full report here

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SERAP Secures Judgment Ordering President Muhammadu Buhari to Look into Allegations of Corruption

A judgement delivered on 27th May 2018 by Justice Mohammed Idris, following a mandamus with suit no: FHC/L/CS/1821/2017 brought by the  Socio-Economic Rights and Accountability Project, SERAP, has ordered President Muhammadu Buhari to “urgently instruct security and anti-corruption agencies to forward to him reports of their investigations into allegations of budget padding and stealing of some N481 billion from the 2016 budget by some principal officers of the National Assembly.” Read more

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Saudi Arabia Outlaws Sexual Harassment

Saudi Arabia has passed a new law to criminalise sexual harassment. The kingdom’s Shura Council, which advises the cabinet, passed a draft law on Monday which would introduce a prison term of up to five years and a maximum penalty of 300,000 riyals ($80,000). Read more

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Nigerian Activists Warn IDPs of Human Trafficking Risk

Human rights activists say countless women and girls who were living in IDP camps in northeast Nigeria have been lured to other countries under false pretenses for sex work or slave labor. A new campaign is trying to educate women about the dangers. In Maiduguri, Chika Oduah went out with the campaigners and interviewed two women who were trafficked abroad and are now back in Nigeria. Watch here

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Activists Create African Human Rights Media Network

Human rights activists based in Nigeria have established the African Human Rights Media Network, which promotes awareness and respect for the rights of minorities, including sexual minorities, throughout the continent. RightsAfrica.com is the central website for the network. Read more

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ICRC Partners Nigerian Police on Rights of Detainees

The International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) says it is partnering the Nigerian Police Force (NPF) to evaluate how the legal system in Nigeria is handling the pre-trial of detainees. Read more

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NHRC Seeks Partnership of Prisons on Human Right Protection

The National Human Rights Commission (NHRC) has sought partnership with Nigerian Prison Service (NPS) on human right protection. The newly appointed Cordinator of NHRC, Mr Nuhu Mohammed made the call when he paid a courtesy visit to the controller of prisons Niger state command, Baba Gana in his office. Read more

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U.S. to Designate Nigeria ‘Country of Particular Concern’ Over Killings

Against the backdrop of incessant killings in Nigeria, particularly the predominantly Muslim herdsmen slaying Christian farmers, the United States Commission on International Religious Freedom (USCIRF) has recommended to the US government that Nigeria should be designated as a “Country of Particular Concern”. Read more

 

OPINION 


Rethinking Sexual and Reproductive Rights in Nigeria: Why Abortion Laws Need Reform

“It is no news that many women around the world today are still being denied  key sexual and reproductive rights i.e. their right to enjoy control over and make decisions on their sexual and reproductive health without discrimination, coercion, detention, or violence. But perhaps nowhere is this more apparent than in Nigeria, where a woman cannot autonomously decide the number and timing of children she wishes to have.” Read more

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18th Democracy Day: How Has Nigeria Fared?

“What Nigeria has become of in the last 19 years of democratic rule calls for reflections. Howbeit, with the gradual development witnessed over the years, Nigerians deserve to remember their past and celebrate a determined leadership now in place.” Read more

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Rapper Falz’s ‘This is Nigeria’ video Holds up a Mirror for the Country

“While the concept for the ‘This is Nigeria,’ video isn’t original, what Falz did was internalize the message, pass it through his own artistic filter and bring it home to Nigeria to highlight the country’s numerous social ills.” Read more

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How Journalism Can Help Beat Human Traffickers in Nigeria

Nigerian journalist and rights advocate, Philip Obaji Jr. describes what working with children displaced by Boko Haram has taught him both about the power of storytelling and the importance of education – and access to clean water – to protect children at risk of trafficking. Read more

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Executed, Disappeared, Tortured: The risks of Defending Human Rights

According to the human rights organisation, Front Line Defenders, 312 human rights activists were murdered in 2017. Of those killed, 212 were from Latin America. In the climate of fear following the murder of activist Berta Cáceres in Honduras, Lucy Lamble talks to Ana Paula Hernández about her work supporting campaigners who fight to protect native lands. Listen to the podcast here

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Community Development as if People Matter: Lessons from Nigeria

“The ways in which communities themselves foster sustainable development have not been adequately studied in most poor societies. Communities acting on the ground, of course, often must balance competing environmental, economic, and social equity demands.” Read more

 

LEDAP@WORK 

LEDAP Writes Open Letter to Universities & Polytechnics on Post-UTME

Based on LEDAP’s recent court judgment obtained at the Federal High Court  in Suit No: FHC/ABJ/CS/979/15 between: LEDAP and Joint Admission and Matriculation Board (JAMB)The Minister of Education and the National Universities Commission (NUC), wherein the court held that only the Joint Admission and Matriculation Board (JAMB) can conduct matriculation examinations and give admissions into tertiary institutions. LEDAP has written to inform Universities and Polytechnics that it would be in breach of the court order if they continue to conducting Post-UTME tests.  Read more

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LEDAP Commences Anti-Torture Training for Police Officersin Adamawa

LEDAP’s training of police officers on torture begins in Adamawa State. LEDAP will commence training of officers at the Adamawa State Command from the 6th to 7th June 2018. Sixty middle and senior officers will be trained on torture prevention strategies, human rights and sexual and gender based violence norms.  The training is part of LEDAP’s  Torture Prevention Project Targeting Police in partnership with the United Nations Democracy Fund (UNDEF) and the National Committee against Torture. For live updates on the training, follow our twitter page @ledapnigeria

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LEDAP, National Judicial Institute, and AfricaLii commence Nigeria Legal Information Institute(NigeriaLii) 
Nigeria Legal Information Institute(NigeriaLii) is aimed at bringing legal materials, all laws and case decisions in Nigeria free of charge to the public. The official launch is coming up soon but the NigeriaLii portal currently contains several thousands of case decisions, statutes, rules of court, and other legal materials. Visit the NigeriaLii website here

 

PeepIntoTheLaw   


Proof Of Evidence, Preliminary Objections And The Recent Supreme Court Decision in UKIRI V. FRN

The Supreme Court in the recent case of  Ukiri Emonena Blessing v. Federal Republic of Nigeria (2018) LPELR-44213(SC) held that  the failure to attach proof of evidence with a charge will only be fatal if the defendant is misled by the error. Read more

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Court Orders IGP, Police to Pay Delta Family N20m over Murder

The Federal High Court in Ibadan, on Thursday ordered the Nigerian Police Force to pay N10 million as compensation to the family of Alidu Hakeem, a commercial driver shot dead by a policeman at Saki. Hakeem was shot to death by a police inspector, Ifeayin Onynbu on March 9, 2016 along Saki-Okere International Market road in Saki. Read more

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Copyright Infringment: Court awards N5m against Clarence Peters

The Federal High Court in Lagos has entered judgment against music video director, Clarence Peters, for alleged copyright infringement. The judgment delivered by Justice Mojisola Olatoregun was in favour of Uwana Victor and Akan Victor, trading under the name, Black Alliance. Read more

 

PeepIntoTheLaw   


Proof Of Evidence, Preliminary Objections And The Recent Supreme Court Decision in UKIRI V. FRN

The Supreme Court in the recent case of  Ukiri Emonena Blessing v. Federal Republic of Nigeria (2018) LPELR-44213(SC) held that  the failure to attach proof of evidence with a charge will only be fatal if the defendant is misled by the error. Read more

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Court Orders IGP, Police to Pay Delta Family N20m over Murder

The Federal High Court in Ibadan, on Thursday ordered the Nigerian Police Force to pay N10 million as compensation to the family of Alidu Hakeem, a commercial driver shot dead by a policeman at Saki. Hakeem was shot to death by a police inspector, Ifeayin Onynbu on March 9, 2016 along Saki-Okere International Market road in Saki. Read more

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Copyright Infringment: Court awards N5m against Clarence Peters

The Federal High Court in Lagos has entered judgment against music video director, Clarence Peters, for alleged copyright infringement. The judgment delivered by Justice Mojisola Olatoregun was in favour of Uwana Victor and Akan Victor, trading under the name, Black Alliance. Read more

 

EVENTS  

Call for Applications: Master’s degree in Sexual and Reproductive Rights in Africa

The Centre for Human Rights, University of Pretoria now offers a LLM/MPhil (Sexual & Reproductive Rights in Africa) degree. This two-year programme is offered as a blended learning course comprising of online interaction and residential block-weeks in Pretoria.  Up to 15 full scholarships are available for African students. Deadline for applications: 31 July 2018. Apply here

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Nigerian National Human Rights Commission, Journal Call for Papers

The Editorial Committee of the Nigerian Human Rights Commission Journal, a publication of the National Human Rights Commission, invites scholarly full length articles, commentaries and notes on contemporary issues of human rights for the 8th edition of the Nigerian National Human Rights Commission Journal. Papers received on or before the 28th of July 2018 will be considered for publication.  Read more

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IWMF Women’s Reporting Grants for Women’s Stories 2018
Applications are now open for the IWMF’s Reporting Grants for Women’s Stories, sponsored by The Secular Society. It is a new funding initiative supporting journalism produced by and about women. Applications close on the 29th of June 2018.  Read more

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Countering Violent Extremism West Africa

The United States Agency for International Development (USAID)/West Africa Regional Peace and Governance Office (RPGO) seeks to award up to four (4) Cooperative Agreements to research and pilot Countering Violent Extremism (CVE) approaches in West Africa under this Annual Program Statement (APS). The APS will feature elements of co-creation that will provide direct engagement of USAID in the design of applications following the presentation of concept notes. The maximum award amount is not expected to exceed US$1,500,000 or duration of two years. Read more

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Report of the UN Special Rapporteur on the situation of Human Rights Defenders to the 73rd session of the UN General Assembly

In view of the upcoming 20th anniversary of the declaration of human rights defenders, the Special Rapporteur will be reporting on the situation of human rights defenders. To this end a questionnaire on the situation of human rights defenders has been prepared for civil society organisations to complete.The deadline for submission is 13th June 2018. Read more

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LEDAP’S Suit Against the Securities and Exchange Commission & 1 Other, Adjourned for Judgement

The Legal Defence and Assistance Project on the 20th of January, 2016 filed an action at the Investment and Securities Tribunal against the Security and Exchange Commission and The Nigerian Stock Exchange challenging the power of the Security and Exchange Commission in allowing states government raise bonds in the open market.

The reason for this action is that the Investment and Securities Act in section 224(3)(a) made clear provisions on the conditions any state government must fulfil before it is granted loan or credit or bond in the capital market and these conditions are strict and ought to be followed and complied with strictly.

The claims sought by LEDAP are as follows;

  1. That the Security and Exchange Commission and the Nigerian Stock Exchange are not to allow state governments float bonds and other security and raise money from the public as this is in violation of the investment and security Act
  2. That the provisions of section 222,223,224,225,226 and the entire provisions of the Investment And Security Act which allows the government to raise fund from the public is unconstitutional
  3. An order restraining the defendants from authorising or raising funds and other securities for any state government in the capital market.

At the last proceeding, which came up on the 27th of February, all parties adopted their applications before the tribunal. The matter has been adjourned to the 22nd of May for Judgment.

 

PRESS RELEASE: INTERNATIONAL WOMEN’S DAY 2018

LEDAP CALLS THE NIGERIAN GOVERNMENT TO STAND UP AGAINST GENDER INEQUALITY

As the world marks the International women’s day, LEDAP lends its voice to that of the global activists, global governments, and women’s organizations to press for the progress of all women in all spheres of life and particularly for gender equality.

LEDAP recognizes the gains in women’s rights advocacy in the recent years ridden on the back of active campaigns for women’s progress. It is apparent that the eras where women were satisfied with being subjugated and subdued have phased out and a new dawn of free-expression and voicing-out against the oppression and tyranny of parochial society is at the horizon.

LEDAP particularly recognizes the active social media campaigns against sexual violence and abuse of women highlighted by the #MeToo and #Timesup movement, the involvement of several women in politics vying for the high offices which were hitherto inconceivable aspirations for women, the outcry against sexual violation of women in the work place and several other cases. LEDAP however admits that despite these pockets of achievements there is still much to be done for the actualization of gender equality in Nigeria.

LEDAP observes that in Nigeria several women especially those in the rural areas remain exploited, discriminated against and are unable to actualize their dreams due to illiteracy and lack of enabling environment. Many of these women do not get a fair opportunity for progress in politics, employment and have no access to reproductive health services. Women in the internally displaced camps have encountered all forms of sexual and gender based violence including sexual exploitation often in exchange for food and other necessities. These women exist in several societies as the voiceless women for whom the press for progress has remained largely illusive.

LEDAP expresses concern that in Nigeria the issues of women’s rights such as the need to create an enabling environment for women in the Nigerian society to receive expression and attain self actualization has not received much attention and many bills to address these grey areas have not been passed under the current President Buhari-led administration. LEDAP believes the confinement of women to the “kitchen” or “the other room” does not align with global trends and civilized existence and Nigeria Government has a major role to play in the emancipation of the Nigerian woman.

LEDAP beckons on the government to take immediate steps to ensure the domestication and implementation of the convention on the elimination of discrimination against women (CEDAW) and the protocol to the African Charter on Human and People’s Rights on the Rights of women in Africa.

LEDAP therefore uses the commemoration of this day to advocate for the voiceless women and girls who continue to live daily facing discrimination, violation and abuse. LEDAP calls on the Nigerian government at Federal and State level to create an enabling environment for women empowerment and ensure equal rights for all women in all spheres of life; access to education, access to reproductive services, equal pay for equal work as well as protection from all forms of violence.

FOR: Legal Defence & Assistance Project-LEDAP

Chino Obiagwu

 

Download press release below:

PRESS RELEASE0001

Int’l Human Rights Day: We must stand up for our rights—CSOs

The need for citizens of the world to rise up in defence of their fundamental human rights, was the trust of this year’s commemoration of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, UDHR.The United Nations General Assembly, 69 years ago adopted the UDHR as Resolution 217 at the Palais de Chaillot in Paris, France on December 10, 1948. Already, the United Nations has kicked off a year-long campaign to mark the upcoming 70th anniversary of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights. The world body has started a campaign with hash tag #Stand Up 4HumanRights. According to the United Nations, UN, the UDHR is a document that proclaimed the inalienable rights which everyone is entitled to as a human being-regardless of race, colour, religion, sex, language, political or other opinion, national or social origin, property, birth or other status. Already, the document has been translated into more than 500 languages across the world. The document which was drafted by representatives of diverse legal and cultural backgrounds from all regions of the world, sets out universal values and a common standard of achievement for all people and nations. It establishes the equal dignity and worth of every person. The principles enshrined in the Declaration are as relevant today as they were in 1948. The campaign by the world body is that everyone needs “to stand up for our own rights and those of others.” The questions that still agitate citizens of the world, particularly Nigerians as he world mark the Day remains: “ Has the dignity of the people been uplifted and the foundation for a more just world been built?” The struggle for a just society and anticipation for a better living has become one of the major issues bordering the minds of every reasonable Nigerians. Vanguard Law and Human Rights got reactions of Nigerians and some civil society groups on this issue.  Let government implement socio-economic rights —NHRC Lagos zone Mr. Lucas Koyejo, Zonal Coordinator, Lagos zone National Human Rights Commission, NHRC said the body held a sensitization programme with pupils and students with the theme: “Our Rights, Our Freedom Always. “We should stand up for our rights all the time. Our focus is for the Federal Government to step up actions on the National Action Plan on Human Rights in ensuring that human rights of the citizenry are realised. “The rights are specifically based on social economic rights of the people. There is need for more action by the government to ensure that Nigerians enjoy the benefit of democracy by ensuring that the provisions in Chapter 2 of the 1999 are realisable, that is that the economic and social rights of Nigerians are achievable. “The message is that every person, especially, the youths should be made to know the provision of the UDHR. “The commemoration of the UDHR, established on December 10, 1948, is an event worthy of celebration every year. My advise is that every Nigerian should be active in the protection of his or her fundamental rights by holding the government and political office holders accountable for upholding the human rights of the citizenry.” Another rights group, Access to Justice, AJ in a statement by its Deputy Director, Dr. Adenike Aiyedun, said: “As the United Nations has said on several occasions, human rights are inalienable rights and every state is under an obligation to respect, promote, defend and protect the rule of law. The rule of law requires respect for the principles of supremacy of the law, equality before the law, accountability to the law, fairness in the application of the law, separation of powers, public participation in decision-making, legal certainty, avoidance of arbitrariness and procedural and legal transparency by all arms of government. Some of these precepts have, however, not been duly observed by the government of the day. “With the present state of affairs in the country, unfortunately, the significance of “human rights day” for Nigerians will be a pale one. Practical evidence shows that the Nigerian government regards the rule of law and human rights as expendable obligations and rights and will readily sacrifice these values for any cause of action it chooses to take, without due regard for the protection of the rights of its citizens. “With the recent activities of President Muhammadu Buhari’s government, he has managed to re-create an era of imperial Presidency, where no one is able to hold off the powers of the State and no court can compel the State to respect its decisions. “The present administration has exhibited and continues to exhibit no regard for court orders, by willfully disobeying and flouting various court orders and rulings, thereby undermining the role of the judiciary. “Furthermore, some State security officers have exhibited excessive forms of brutality and on some occasions leading to death. Under President Buhari’s government, thousands of Nigerians have lost their lives to State violence perpetrated by forces of the State. “We hereby urges President Buhari to repair the huge damage done to the security and enjoyment of human rights of Nigerians, as well as, the rule of law in the country. In order to do this, we ask the President to lead by example and show more accountable leadership whenever there are human rights violations. We also implore him to respect the authority of courts, urgently reform the institutions of law enforcement and security, and bring to justice all those who have gravely violated the rights of others.” Also, Legal Defence and Assistance Project, LEDAP in a statement by its Executive Programmes Director, Adaobi Egboka, on the state of human rights in the country at present, said “LEDAP observes that Nigeria is at a critical stage where the questions of human rights and its priority in our national existence must be seriously regarded by the Nigerian Government. “LEDAP is greatly concerned over the frequent coercive interaction of law enforcement agencies, the military and other security agencies with civilians which brings to the fore the need for more to be done by the current President Buhari led administration in the area of human rights protection. “The recent end SARS campaign, the move by the federal legislators to regulate the NGOs, the widely reported cases of inhuman treatment of civilians by the soldiers in different forms of “dances” are but a few human rights questions in our recent past. “It is worrisome that despite Nigeria’s adoption of major International human rights instruments and the incorporation of human rights in the constitution, human rights protection in Nigeria remains appalling. “LEDAP recommends that proper training of law enforcement agencies on the imperative duty to respect human rights is necessary to reduce the unlawful infraction of human rights. “We also recommends legislative action and strongly advocates for the decriminalization of “petty offences” under Nigerian penal statutes as their criminalization has not served the end of justice or rehabilitation but have rather being a tool for wrongful arrests, increased criminality, illegal detention without proper trial, bribery and Human rights violations. “LEDAP therefore, calls on the government to uphold international legal obligations and incorporate constitutional and institutional reforms at all levels with the overall objective of advancing the cause of human rights.” Similarly, Human Rights Monitoring Agenda, HURMA’s Convener/Executive Director, Mr Buna Isiak, on the need for Nigerians to be mindful of their rights, attributed the frustration in the country to the breaches in the fundamental rights of many Nigerians. At a seminar to mark the day, he said “Today is an opportunity for us to know where we are in term of human rights. We see people leaving the country everyday, this is as a result of breaches in fundamental human rights. That is why HURMA is enlightening people about what constitutes their rights and we are encouraging them to fight for these rights.” A Lagos-based lawyer, Dr. Muiz Banire, SAN, attributed human rights breaches in the country, to the ignorance of Nigerians  to their rights, which he said contributed to the suffering of many in the country. The lawyer urged Nigerians “To go and learn more about their rights because there is too much ignorance about their rights, that is why the suffering in the land will continue.” A Lagos State House of Assembly member representing Shomolu Constituency 1, Emmanuel Olowo, called on Nigerians to be active in the electoral processes in the country, as it was their right, if they desire to be free from the burden of those who governing them. He said: “Nigerians should be active in choosing their leaders. They should choose leaders that will make them to achieve their purpose in life, choose the leaders that will make them achieve their hearty desires, choose leaders that will protect their welfare and provide security for them. All these can only be achieved by the power of their vote and if they know their rights.”

Read more at: https://www.vanguardngr.com/2017/12/intl-human-rights-day-must-stand-rights-csos/