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.
24th – 28th September 2018

“To deny people their human rights is to challenge their very humanity.”

— Nelson Mandela


Buhari Attends Bilateral Meeting with UN Secretary General, Mr Antonio Guterres

President Buhari attends bilateral meeting with UN Secretary general Mr Antonio Guterres at the sidelines of the 73rd Session of the United Nations General Assembly in New York on Wednesday, September 26, 2018. Read more


Minimum Wage Strike: Courts, Federal Ministry of Justice under lock

ABUJA – Courts and other justice related institutions within the Federal Capital Territory, FCT, Abuja, were on Thursday September 27, shut down by officials of the Judiciary Staff Union of Nigeria, JUSUN, in compliance with the indefinite strike that was declared by the Nigeria Labour Congress, NLC. Locked out of their offices by the striking workers, included the Chief Justice of Nigeria, CJN, President of the Court of Appeal, Chief Judges of both the Federal High Court and the FCT High Court, as well as the Attorney General of the Federation and Minister of Justice. Justices of the Supreme Court, Judges, lawyers and litigants were equally denied entry into any court within the FCT. Read more


NHRC Partners UN, AU on Human Rights Instruments

The National Human Rights Commission (NHRC) is to partner with the UN and African Union (AU) to facilitate the implementation of all human rights instruments that Nigeria is party to. Mr Tony Ojukwu, Executive Secretary of the commission, made this known in his address at a two-day training workshop for MDAs on the Implementation of UN Agenda 2030 (SDGs) and AU Agenda 2063 respectively in Abuja. Read more


Nigeria’s Supreme Court Delivers 297 Judgments in 2017/2018 Legal Year

The Supreme Court said it delivered 297 judgments by the close of the 2017/2018 legal year. Justice Walter Onnoghen, the Chief Justice of Nigeria (CJN), disclosed this on Monday, September 24, in an address at the special session to mark the commencement of the 2018/2019 Legal Year in Abuja. The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that the ceremony also witnessed the swearing-in of 30 new Senior Advocates of Nigeria. Mr Onnoghen further said the court considered 1,540 matters comprising motions, appeals and judgments. Read more


Nigeria Convicts 359 Human Traffickers
President Muhammadu Buhari has said that his administration had so far secured 359 convictions against human traffickers. Speaking at the 6th INTERPOL global conference on human trafficking and migrant smuggling in Abuja on Monday,September 24, the President stated that Nigeria was one of the first countries to implement the United Nations resolution on human trafficking. Read more


At the UN, Buhari Unfolds Nigeria’s Stance on Global Matters

President Muhammadu Buhari Tuesday in New York unfolded Nigeria’s positions on international matters before the global audience. Presenting Nigeria’s National Statement during the opening day of the General Debate of the 73rd Session of the United Nation’s General Assembly (UNGA73), the President first paid glowing tributes to the late seventh UN Secretary-General, Kofi Annan, for his invaluable contributions to global peace. Read more


Full List Of the 30 Newly Appointed Senior Advocates Of Nigeria

The Chief Justice of Nigeria Justice Walter Onnoghen on Monday swore in 30 newly-appointed Senior Advocates of Nigeria SAN. Justice Onnoghen inaugurated the newly appointed SANs during the special court session of the Supreme Court to mark the commencement of the 2018/2019 Legal Year at the Supreme Court complex in Abuja, Nigeria’s capital. The 30 SANs who were inaugurated on Monday included Attorney-General of Lagos state, Adeniji Kazeem, Attorney-General of Ondo state, Adekola Olawoye, the National Coordinator of the Legal Defence and Assistance Project (LEDAP) Mr. Chinonye Obiagwu, amongst others. Read more


FG Sets Up Committee To Protect Detainees In Nigeria Prisons

The Federal government has set up a committee to protect the rights of detained suspects in Nigeria prisons, the Chairman, Presidential Committee on Prisons De-congestion and Reform (PCPDR), Justice Ishaq Bello disclosed today, September 27, 2018. Bello made this known in Abuja while inaugurating a working group to monitor the implementation of Section 34 of the Administration of Criminal Justice Act (ACJA), 2015. Bello, who is also the Chief Judge of the High Court of the Federal Capital Territory (FCT), said: “We are concerned about the way detainees are treated and the condition under which they are kept.” He said the challenge of lack of access to legal representation by the poor detainees also contributes to congestion in prisons. Read more


FSARS Commanders Undergo Training on Human Rights

The police on Monday, September 24, in Lagos commenced a two-week training on human rights for Federal Special Anti-robbery Squad (FSARS) commanders nationwide to reposition the outfit. The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that over 100 FSARS commanders drawn from the 36 states and Abuja were participating in the exercise. Read more


PMB Committed to Human Rights, Rule Of Law – Malami

The Attorney General of the Federation and minister of Justice, Abubakar Malami, has said that President Muhammadu Buhari is committed to the principles of human rights and rule of law. Malami, made this known yesterday, September 18, during the opening ceremony of the North Central consultation on the National Action Plan (NAP), for the promotion and protection of human rights in Nigeria. Read More


Osun: NUJ, CSO Accusses INEC of Double Standard

LOKOJA – Kogi State Chairman of the Nigeria Union of Journalists, Mr. MomohJimoh Adeiza has said the declaration of Osun governorship poll inconclusive by the electoral umpire has left Nigerians and other followers of political events in the country more confused. The Kogi NUJ boss who likewise warned the Independent National Electoral Commission, INEC to thread carefully as the country prepares for another round of elections next year said their recent decision is calling for revolts from the populace that may set the country on fire. Read more


NFNV Nigeria Moves to Strengthen Partnership with UN Women

The leadership of the Pan African network of women in business and finance New Faces New Voices (NFNV) in Nigeria has moved to strengthen its relationship with the United Nations Entity for Gender Equality and the Empowerment of Women (UN Women) in West Africa with a visit to UN Women’s representative to Nigeria and ECOWAS, Wednesday, 19 September in Abuja, Nigeria. Read more


Nigerian Embassy In U.S Allegedly Targets Human Rights Lawyer For Criticizing Buhari

A US-based Nigerian human rights lawyer, Emmanuel Ogebe, has alleged efforts by the Nigerian Embassy in Washington DC to have his passport withdrawn over his constant criticism of the President Muhammadu Buhari-led government. According to Ogebe, documents filed in an Abuja court show that the government wants his passport withdrawn for allegedly “trash-talking Nigeria” on social media. Read more


Osinbajo: Peace is Attainable in Nigeria Despite Challenges

Worried by incidences of crisis across the country, Vice President Yemi Osinbajo, yesterday, September 22, said peace is attainable in Nigeria, despite threats to the nation’s peaceful co-existence. Osinbajo spoke at the 2018 International Day of Peace, held in Lagos and organised by the Lagos State Citizens Mediation Centre (CMC). Speaking through the Rules of Law Advisor in the Office of the Vice President, Akingbolahan Adeniran, Professor Osinbajo admitted that even though there was threat to peace in the nation, pragmatic approach could be adopted to enhance peace in the nation. Read more


Birth Registration First Step to Legal Identity – NPoPc

The National Population Commission (NPoPc) says birth registration is the first step in securing legal identity. The Director, Public Affairs Department of the commission, Mr Mohammed Isah, said this in an interview with newsmen on Friday, September 21, in Abuja. Isah urged Nigerians to register and obtain a birth certificate, saying that there is no better identity than birth registration. He stated that the only valid instrument attached to a child after names were given was birth registration and certificate. Read more


The Benefits Of Digital Rights And Freedom Bill

“The bill is a legislation proposed to be an act to provide for the protection of human rights online and protect internet users in Nigeria from infringement of their fundamental freedom and also to guarantee application of human rights for users of digital platforms.” Read more


Confronting Human Rights Violations in Africa One Hashtag at a Time

“While countries like Uganda, Nigeria, and Rwanda have constitutions that technically guarantee rights such as freedom of association, speech, and assembly, these rights are often violated. Today, galvanised by increased connectivity, youthful pan-African online communities are using social media to speak out against this repression and support younger candidates vying for office in countries where leaders have clung to power for decades.” Read more


What Does It Take To Be A Responsible Jeweller?
Gold mining has been tainted by serious human rights abuses, including child labor, deadly working conditions, forced evictions, and harmful pollution. Human Rights Watch has documented such abuses in the Philippines, Papua New Guinea, Ghana, Mali, Nigeria, Tanzania, Uganda, and Eritrea. Read more


Zamfara: Nigeria’s Wild Northwest
Hundreds have lost their lives this year as a fertile region descends into worsening conflict

“Zamfara is different from highly politicised farmer-herder clashes in other parts of Nigeria where largely Muslim pastoralists push south in search of pasture and meet increasingly populated Christian farming areas. Instead, Zamfara is overwhelmingly Muslim and, human rights groups argue, the violence here is fundamentally about the government’s abdication of its responsibility to protect its citizens.” Read more


Africa’s Selective Approach to Human Rights

Despite research and historical accounts detailing homosexual behaviour in certain pre-colonial and traditional African societies, the idea that homosexuality is “un-African” persists. In Africa, it is frequently perceived as both a taboo and an import from the West. Read more


LEDAP Secures Judgement in Favour of Kabiru Ahmed, a Victim of Police Brutality in Yola, Adamawa State.
As part of its pro-bono services to victims of human rights violations in Nigeria, the Legal Defence and Assistance Project (LEDAP), through one its numerous pro-bono lawyers,U.B. Ismaila (ESQ), filed a motion at the Federal High Court, Yola seeking for the enforcement of the fundamental human rights of Mr Kabiru Ahmed who was unlawfully arrested, detained and tortured by officers of the Nigerian Police in July 2016. In the ruling which was delivered by His Lordship, Balkisu Bello Aliyu, the applicant was awarded five million (5,000,000) Naira against the respondents, as a compensation for the unlawful arrest, detention and torture inflicted on him.


Invitation to Stakeholders Round Table Dialogue against Torture

The Legal Defence and Assistance Project (LEDAP) in partnership with United Nations Democracy Fund (UNDEF) and National Committee againts Torture (NCaT) invites stakeholders to a roundtable dialogue aimed at reducing the incidences of Torture and improving redress for victims of torture and ill treatment which will be taking place in Abuja.
For live updates on the
Anti-Torture Project follow the project on Twitter, Facebook Instagram & our blog page and follow the conversation using #stoptorturein9ja on all social media platforms.


LEDAP Petitions the Presidency on behalf of 279 persons illegally detained by the Nigerian Army since 2015

The Legal Defence and Assistance Project (LEDAP) has submitted a petition to the Secretary to the Presidential Panel on Review of Compliance of the Armed Forces with Human Rights Obligations and Rules of Engagement, demanding for a public hearing for 279 persons from Bama LGA detained by the Nigerian Army since 2015 on mere suspicion of being members of the dreaded Boko Haram sect.


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.

From LEDAP’s Archives

Ayodele Ogunlana Freed By LEDAP After 7 Years On Death Row

Mr. Ayodele Ogunlana and Mr. Kelvin Inyam were both charged with Armed Robbery and Conspiracy To Commit Armed Robbery under Section 402 of The Criminal Code. Mr. Ayodele was found not guilty and was discharged and acquitted by Hon. Justice A. O. Akinlade of the Lagos High Court. The other accused person, Mr. Kelvin was found guilty as charged and was sentenced to death by hanging. Ayodele Ogunlana, from Oke-Ife, Ijebu-Ife, Ogun State, was charged with Armed Robbery and Conspiracy To Commit Armed Robbery. The Mobile Police arrested Ayodele… Read more


Launch of Model Police Statement Taking Room


On the 22nd of July 2015, LEDAP with the Zonal Command, Nigeria Police Force Zone 2, Onikan Lagos launched the model police statement taking room with the support of Justice for All (J4A) Programme of the UK Department for International Development (DFID). This milestone reaffirmed LEDAP’s commitment in building capacity for improved criminal justice delivery in the country. Read more


FREED: Two Juveniles on Death Row in Lagos Freed

After spending 10 years in prison and 5 years on death row, the Court of Appeal in Lagos, today discharged and acquitted Sopuruchi Obed and Otobong Sunday Edet who were convicted and sentenced to death for armed robbery by the Lagos State high court on 29 August 2009. Following the appeal against their conviction and sentence filed in 2011 by LEDAP – Legal Defence & Assistance Project, a panel of Justices of the Court of Appeal, Lagos Division unanimously allowed their separate appeals and set aside their conviction and sentence. Read more


Orji Kalu’s N4.6bn Fraud Case Adjourned Indefinitely
TWELVE years after the trial of a former Governor of Abia State, Orji Uzor Kalu, a Federal High Court sitting in Lagos on Thursday, September 28, adjourned the N4.6 billion fraud case indefinitely. Kalu is standing trial alongside his Commissioner for Finance, Udeh Jones Udeogu, and a firm, Slok Nigeria Limited. Read more


Court Awards Damages Against Police Over Rights Violation

A Lagos high court has ordered the police to pay N350, 000 damages to one Mr Godwin Femin over the violation of his right. The trial judge, Mrs E. Alakija make the order in a judgment delivered in suit no LD/7209MFHR/18 filed by the claimant (Femin) against the Inspector General of Police and the Commissioner of Police. Read more


Court Slams Death Penalty on Armed Robber in Ondo

Ondo State High Court sitting in Akure, the state capital on Thursday sentenced one James Ofem, an armed robbery culprit, to death by hanging. Ofem was part of the notorious robbery gang terrorizing residents and mostly motorists on the Ondo/ Ore road and had been the security watch list for a long time. Read more


Court Awards N1m to Farmer for Unlawful Arrest and Detention

A High Court of the Federal Capital Territory sitting in Jabi has awarded a farmer Mr Samuel Dozo, 1 million Naira based on suit suing the police for an unlawful arrest and detention. Read more


Court Dismisses Impeached Benue Speaker’s Case

A Makurdi High Court presided over by Justice Theresa Igoche, yesterday, dismissed the preliminary objection raised by the impeached Speaker of the Benue State House of Assembly, Mr. Terkimbi Ikyange, challenging the jurisdiction of the court to entertain the suit stopping him and two other former principal officers of the House from parading themselves as leaders of the House. Read more


Renewal of Writ: Michael Kolawole v Pezzani Alberto (1989) 1 NWLR (Pt.98). 2

The Supreme Court held in the famous case of Kolawole v Alberto that a writ can renewed even after its expiration.
Want to read the full case? Click
here to read the full case on the Nigerialii website.


Call for Expressions of Interest: Collective Impact Tools and Approaches Capacity Building Workshops
The Strengthening Advocacy and Civic Engagement (SACE) Project invites Expressions of Interest (EoI) from organization CEOs and senior program leads whose organizations are supporting work that promotes good governance and policy reform across any development sector to a three-day capacity building workshop on approaches and tools for collective impact programming. The Workshop will hold in Port Harcourt for Niger Delta-based organization from the 16th – 18th of October 2018 and in Abuja for organizations based in other regions in the country from October 23 – 25, 2018. Application Deadline 30th September 2018. Click here for more information.


World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO) Indigenous Fellowship Program 2019/2020

The World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO) seeks expressions of interest from suitably qualified indigenous individuals for the WIPO Indigenous Fellowship. The fellowship responds to the reciprocal needs for stronger capacity in the rapidly growing domain on Indigenous IP law and policy for indigenous lawyers and policy advisers. This one year fellowship (2019) is renewable for one more year (2020). Click here for more information. Deadline for application is October 8, 2018.


Nomination Ongoing for the Gani Fawehinmi Impact and Integrity Award (GFIIA)
HEDA Resource Centre, with the support of MacArthur Foundation, has decided to institute an Annual Chief Gani Fawehinmi SAM, SAN Award for Integrity, Accountability and Whistleblowing in Nigeria to be conferred on deserving Nigerians of imperturbable characteristic, Courage, Selflessness and Honesty. There are two award categories, Outstanding Integrity Award (OIA) and Valuable Whistle Blower Award (VWBA). For more information and to nominate an individual, click here. Nomination deadline is October 12, 2018


Invitation to the International Society for the Reform of Criminal Law Conference 2019

The International Society for the Reform of Criminal Law invites all those who work in the administration of criminal justice and the promotion of sound practice in governance, risk management and ethical behaviour in their own jurisdiction and internationally, and representatives of other aspects of society such as the construction industry and sport to its year 2019 conference themed Bribery & Corruption: Modern Approaches to an Eternal Problem. The conference which will appeal to the judiciary, prosecution agencies, defence lawyers, legal policy drafters, law enforcement, corrections and government officials will be held in Brisbane, Australia from 9-12 July 2019. Speakers and sponsors are also wanted. Click here for more information.


2018 Nigerian Education Innovation Summit (NEDIS IV)
Registration is ongoing for the 2018 Nigerian Education Innovation Summit (NEDIS IV). The two-day conference themed “Accountability & Transparency in the Education Sector: Issues Challenges and Opportunities” is scheduled to hold on Thursday 18th & Friday 19th October 2018 in Lagos, Nigeria. To attend, complete the online registration form here and follow the instructions. If you are interested in registering as an exhibitor or sponsor send an email to or call Akinwunmi on +234 809 111 5403. Click here for more information


Call for Submissions: Women Deprived of Liberty

The Working Group on the issue of discrimination against women in law and in practice will present a thematic report on women deprived of liberty to the 41st session of the Human Rights Council in June 2019. In this regard, the Working Group would like to seek inputs from States and other stakeholders to inform the preparation of this report in line with its mandate to maintain a constructive approach and dialogue with States and other stakeholders to address discrimination against women in law and practice, and is thus seeking responses from all interested stakeholders to the questionnaire here. Questionnaire should be to to by 1st October 2018.

Voice Beyond the Incident: Nigeria Sudden Opportunity Grant

Are there sudden manifestations or situation of injustice against person/persons/community? If your answer is yes, apply for the Sudden Opportunity Grant to voice beyond the incident. Deadline for application is 31 December 2018. Click here to find out 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


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