Tag: Nigeria

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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 16TH JULY- 20TH 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   

LPPC Confers SAN Rank on 31 Senior Lawyers

The Legal Practitioners’ Privileges Committee, LPPC, on 11th July 2018, elevated 31 senior lawyers to the rank of Senior Advocates of Nigeria, among them, National Coordinator, Legal Defence and Assistance Project, LEDAP, Mr Chinonye Obiagwu; Vice Chancellor of Lagos State University, Prof. Olanrewaju Fagbohun and Attorneys General of Lagos and Ondo States, Mosediq Kazeem and Adekola Olawole. Read more

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House Committee in Partnership with NCICC Hold Public Hearing

Nigeria’s House of Representatives’ Committee on Treaties, Protocols, and Agreement on Wednesday in Abuja began a public hearing on a “bill for an act to provide for enforcement and punishment of crimes against humanity, war crimes, genocide and for other related offences.” Read more
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Group Asks ICC to Tackle Buhari on Middle Belt Killing

The Nigerian Coalition for the International Criminal Court (NCICC) has called on  the court prosecutor, Fatou Bensouda, to engage President Muhammadu Buhari on the continued killings in the North-central and North-eastern parts of the country. Read more

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Ekiti Governorship Election Credible – Observers

A coalition of Civil Society Organisations (CSOs) based in Ekiti State on Monday affirmed that the July 14 governorship election won by the All Progressives Congress (APC) candidate, Dr. Kayode Fayemi, reflected the wishes of the electorate. The three groups – New Initiative for Social Development (NISD), Centre for Social Justice, Good Health and Community Development (CENSJHOD) and International Federation of Women Lawyers (FIDA) – condemned vote buying at the poll. Read more

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Iceland Replaces US on Human Rights Council

Iceland has for the first time been elected to the Human Rights Council, filling the seat vacated by the US, which withdrew from the body in June, citing bias. The UN General Assembly elected Iceland to serve on the Geneva-based global rights body effective immediately, through to the end of 2019. Read more

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International Criminal Court Treaty Turns 20
Last week was the 20th anniversary of the adoption of the Rome Statute, the treaty that led to the creation of the International Criminal Court (ICC) in the Hague. The court, with its mandate to prosecute atrocity crimes, has a more crucial role than ever. Read more

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FG Orders AGF To Fast-track Decongestion Of Prisons In Nigeria

The Federal Government has directed the Minister of Justice and Attorney General of the Federation, (AGF), Abubakar Malami to fast-track the decongestion of prisons and set up a stakeholders committee to that effect.  Read more

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Stop Paying Lip Service to Prison Congestion – CURE-Nigeria Tells Federal Government

Citizens United for the Rehabilitation of Errants, CURE-Nigeria has accused the Federal Government of paying lip service to the nagging issue of prison congestion in Nigeria. Read more
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Cameroon Unrest Drives 180,000 from Their Homes

Human Rights Watch on Thursday blamed Cameroon’s government forces and separatists for worsening violence in the country’s anglophone regions which has left scores dead and displaced over 180,000 people. Read more

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UN, AU to come to Nigeria & other Conflict Areas in Africa

The UN Security Council and the Africa Union Peace and Security Council (AUPSC) have agreed to embark on a joint visit to conflict areas in Africa. The members of the two councils held their 12th annual joint consultative meeting in New York and issued a joint communique. Read more

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UN Raises Alarm over Herdsmen killings, warns Nigeria

The Special Representative of the UN Secretary-General for West Africa and the Sahel, Mohamed Ibn Chambas, says the conflicts between herdsmen and farmers in Nigeria are becoming more sophisticated and deadlier. Chambas,in a report presented to the UN Security Council, said the violence was a major security threat in the region, warning that it risks changing into terrorist attacks. Read more

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UN Cautions Nigerian Media Against Conflict Promotion

The United Nations has called on the media in Nigeria to stop promoting conflicts in the interest of peace and justice, adding that it must facilitate informed debates with opportunities for all citizens to express their views. Read more

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Nigeria Committed To Better Environment, Human Rights — Speaker Dogara

Speaker of the Nigeria’s House of Representatives, Yakubu Dogara, has reaffirmed the commitment of the green chamber to prioritising issues related to human rights and protection of the environment. Read more
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UNESCO Advocates Global Priotization of Press Freedom
United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organisation (UNESCO) has called on governments across the globe to create policies that promote freedom of the press. UNESCO on its website said “the free-flow of ideas, words and pictures is a catalyst for freedom of expression and sustainability of global peace. Read more
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UN Celebrates Mandela

The UN is to mark the 100th anniversary of former South African President Nelson Mandela in recognition for his global contribution to the culture of peace and freedom. Read more

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Nigeria Believes in the Respect for Human Rights, President tells ICC

President Muhammadu Buhari has told the International Criminal Court that Nigeria cooperates fully with the court because it is a firm believer in the respect for the rule of law and human rights. Read more
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“ACJA’s domestication will Guarantee Speedy Justice Delivery, Rule of Law”
The domestication and implementation of the Administration of Criminal Justice Act (ACJA) will quicken the dispensation of justice and observance to human rights in Nigeria, the Nigeria Bar Association (NBA) has said. Read more

 

OPINION 


Ensuring that the ICC Rises to the Challenge

“This sad situation is a far cry from the summer of 1998, when many governments with the support of nongovernmental organizations came together in Rome to create the ICC.” Read more
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“These Killings Can Be Stopped”

Abuses by Government and Separatist Groups in Cameroon’s Anglophone Regions

Cameroon, a bilingual and multicultural country known for its stability and its strong alliances with France and the US, is slipping into a protracted human rights crisis in the largely Anglophone North-West and South-West regions that border Nigeria. Read more

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Make Everyday A Mandela Day
Mandela Day is a global call to action that celebrates the idea that each individual has the power to transform the world, the ability to make an impact. It is. not meant as a public holiday, but as a day to honour the legacy of Nelson Mandela. Read more
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Countering Rape Culture In Nigeria

There are cultural practices that society engages in that excuse or otherwise tolerate sexual assault. These practices are counterproductive to eliminating sexual violence from our society, begging the questions about what rape culture really entails and how it presents itself. Read more

 

LEDAP@WORK 

LEDAP Joins Kimpact Development Initiative (KDI) for “Vote Not Fight” Workshop

LEDAP’s, Zonal Coordinator for Osun State, Mr. Dare Adeoye was at the “Vote Not Fight” workshop organised by the Kimpact Developmemt Initiative to educate and mobilise stakeholers on the upcoming 2018 Governorship Gubernatorial Elections. Read more
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LEDAP Anti-Torture Project to Commence Training in Yobe State


The Anti-Torture Project will commence the training of 6o police officers in Yobe State on torture prevention strategies, human rights and sexual and gender based violence norms. The training will take place from the 31st July to 1st August 2018. For live updates on the training follow the project on T
witter, Facebook and Instagram and follow the conversation using #stoptorture9ja
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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 to read the most recent court judgments.

PeepIntoTheLaw   

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 Ministry 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.

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Locking Up A Customer For Failure To Pay Debt Is False Imprisonment, Court Rules

A High Court of Anambra State presided over by Hon. Justice Okuma, has ruled that the act of Corporate Institutions, especially, Hospitals locking up their customers/clients from exiting their premises on the guise that they must complete payment amounts to false imprisonment. Read more

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Afam Osigwe V NBA President & Ors: Court Orders That Defendants Be Put On Notice

Justice Chukwudi. C. Okaa of Nnewi High Court in Anambra State has ordered that the Incorporated trustee of the NBA and other defendants in the suit brought against them by Mazi Afam Osigwe, be put on notice before the court can hear the Ex-parte application filed. Read more

 

EVENTS  

Strategy and Advocacy Meeting of African Civil Society Network on International Justice

The African Civil Society Network on International Justice, will meet on the 31st to 1st August in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia.The purpose of the meeting is to consolidate and strengthen the Network as a platform for Civil Society Organisations working on international justice in Africa.
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NHRC Public Hearing on SARS Complaints

In light of the numerous complaints against the Special Anti Robbery Squad around the country, the National Human Rights Commission will be holding public hearings across the country. The first hearing, will hold in the South East Geopolitical Zone of the country from the 31st July to 2nd August 2018 at the Federal High Court, Enugu.
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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

Nominations for the Bob Hepple Equality Award 

Nominations for the Bob Hepple Equality Award 2018 are open. Do you know of somebody who has made a significant contribution to combating discrimination or advancing equality, but who has not yet received the credit they deserve? If so, please nominate them for the fourth annual Bob Hepple Equality Award. Deadline for application is 31st July 2018. Read more

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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NEWSLETTER FOR 2ND-6TH 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.
2nd-6th July 2018 2018

“We will not enjoy security without development, we will not enjoy development without security, and we will not enjoy either without respect for human rights.” 

—Former UN Secretary-General Kofi Annan

NEWS   

Nigerian Elected Judge of African Court on Human Rights

Nigeria’s Stella Isibhakhomen Anukam has been elected as one of the judges of the African Court on Human and People’s Rights. Read more

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Civil Rights Activists March to Aso Rock over Killings Across Nigeria

Hundreds of civil rights activists marched to the Nigerian government’s seat of power, Aso Rock, to demand the end of killings in the country. The march was an initiative of a coalition of young Nigerians promoting good governance and citizen engagement under the name – Enough is Enough Nigeria. Read more

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Ezekwesili asks FG to Respond on Anti SARS Campaigns

A former minister of education, Oby Ezekwesili said the Federal Government should be responsible enough and act on #EndSARS clamour by Nigerians. Mrs Ezekwesili said this at the Nigeria Internet Governance Forum which held in Abuja. Read more

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Army Opens Human Rights Desk in Akwa Ibom

The Nigerian Army has opened a Human Rights desk in Akwa Ibom state to foster cordial civil military relationship in their area of operation.The Commander 2 Brigade Nigerian Army, Brig.-Gen. Abdu Hassan, disclosed this while speaking with newsmen in Uyo on Wednesday. Read more 

Police Charges Officers To Respect Human Rights Or Be Sanctioned

The Nigeria Police has charged it’s officers and men to embrace modern day policing by giving respect for human rights and protection of suspects inline with the inspector general of police’s policy direction. Read more

Court Orders Nigeria to Pay Two Families N170m over Rights Abuses

The Community Court of the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS) has ordered the Nigerian government to pay two families over N150million for rights violation. The court gave the directive in two judgements it delivered on Wednesday in two suits filed by the two Nigerian families, whose members suffered rights violation in the hands of security agents.  Read more

Senate okays State Police Agitations, House of Representatives to Probe Tanker Explosions
The Senate approved suggestions and agitations for the creation of state police as a way of strengthening security across the country. The Senate also directed its Committee on Judiciary, Human Rights and Legal Matters to come up with a bill for creation of truth, peace and reconciliation commission within the next two weeks. In another development, in a bid to ensure the well-being of the citizenry, the House of Representatives has resolved to probe into the rising cases of petroleum tanker accidents leading to wanton destruction of lives and property across the country.
Read more

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Senate to Investigate Alleged Sexual Abuse, Violence At IDP Camps
The Senate will investigate reports of alleged sexual abuse of women at Internally Displaced Persons Camps in the North East and other parts of the country. Read more

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President Buhari Signs Executive Order to Check Corruption 

President Muhammadu Buhari has signed into law an Executive Order aimed at seizing assets of corrupt persons and institutions in Nigeria. The order also targets specific politically exposed persons who are currently being tried in courts for corruption. Read more

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NGO Petititons NHRC over Killing of Corps Member in Abuja

The Gavel, a non-governmental organisation, has written a petition to the National Human Rights Commission (NHRC) against the police officers who allegedly killed an Abuja corps member, Angela Igwetu. Read more

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Human Rights Watch Urges Ethiopia to Probe Claims of Torture at Prisons

Prisoners in Ethiopia’s eastern Somali region have been arbitrarily detained and tortured for years, Human Rights Watch said, as it urged the Horn of Africa nation’s new prime minister to order an investigation. Read more

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Bring Perpetrators to Justice, Human Rights Commission tells Federal Government

The National Human Rights Commission (NHRC) has called on the federal government to take necessary action within the confines of the law to ensure that those who are behind the current killings in the country are brought to justice without further delay. Read more

 

OPINION 


The Secret Ingredient to Ensuring Human Rights – Salil Shetty

“True, human rights are under attack with very few leaders standing ready to champion them and provide moral leadership on an increasingly fragmented global stage. The United States’ withdrawal from the United Nations Human Rights Council is the latest example of that.” Read more

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SARS Brutality and the Abuse of Human Rights in Nigeria

“Nigerians are being robbed by the Nigerian Police force through the SARS and the government is sitting idle, watching, someday in a twinkle of an eye Nigerians will revolt, taking no more of an idle government that doesn’t understand a singular thing about safety.”  Read more

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Police Barbarism

“There is the urgent need for a drastic psychological re-orientation of members of the NPF. This will entail not just a fundamental review of the curricula of police training schools but also continuous training and re-training, particularly in the areas of respect for human rights as well as the rule of law.” Read more

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Education in Nigeria: Overcoming Mass Displacement

“Mass internal displacement has a large impact on a country’s economy as well as its resources and living conditions. Displacement also greatly affects education. An estimated 952,029 Nigerian children have been displaced with little or no access to education because of the Boko Haram violence.” Read more

 

LEDAP@WORK 

LEDAP & SayNoCampaign Discuss Social Issues with Amplified Radio


LEDAP Represntative, (left)
A representative from the LEDAP’s branch office in Abuja on 5th July 2018, joined SayNoCampaign on a radio program with Amplified Radio, an online radio station to discuss on pressing issues on corruption, child abuse and sexual exploitation.

LEDAP Anti-Torture Project Launches Social Media Campaign


The Anti-Torture Project has launched a social media campaign, follow the campaign on twitter, facebook and instagram, tag us in any stories on police brutality and follow the conversation using #stoptorture9ja

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   

Supreme Court Affirms Three Bakassi Boys’ Death Penalty

The Supreme Court on Friday affirmed the death penalty imposed on three members of Bakassi Boys vigilante group in 2006. The High Court of Abia State had, on February 26, 2006, sentenced the three men to death for the murder of two persons which they were said to have apprehended for an alleged crime. A five-man panel of the apex court led by Justice Dattijo Muhammad unanimously ruled that the three men truly committed murder and deserved the death sentence imposed on them. Read more

Reasons for ‘Bloody’ Fridays At Supreme Court (II)

The Supreme Court hears contentious civil appeals on Mondays and Tuesdays, sits in the chamber to determine non-contentious appeals on Wednesdays; while it hears contentious criminal appeals on Thursdays. But the apex court delivers judgements in both contentious criminal and civil appeals on Fridays.From January 12 to June 1 this year, Supreme Court delivered judgements in 116 criminal appeals, and curiously death sentences by hanging was the dominant conclusion. Read more

Court Orders Issuance Of Notice On Lawmakers 

The Federal High Court in Lagos yesterday ordered that a hearing notice be issued and served on the National Assembly and others in a suit.The applicants are praying for an order compelling Senators and House of Representatives members to refund N13.5million and N10million monthly running cost, which they allegedly collected in the last three years. Read more

 

EVENTS  

Call For Proposals: 16 Days Activism Against Gender Based Violence
The African Women’s Development Fund (AWDF) invites proposals for the 16 Days Against Gender Based Violence. As part of AWDF’s support to the cause to eliminate Violence Against Womnen (VAW), AWDF supports the 16 Days of Activism Against Gender-Based Violence Campaign by awarding grants to women’s organisations in Africa to organise and coordinate activities around the event.
 The deadline for application is 20th July 2018. Read more

Nominations for the Bob Hepple Equality Award 

Nominations for the Bob Hepple Equality Award 2018 are open. Do you know of somebody who has made a significant contribution to combating discrimination or advancing equality, but who has not yet received the credit they deserve? If so, please nominate them for the fourth annual Bob Hepple Equality Award. Deadline for application is 31st July 2018. Read more

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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NEWSLETTER FOR 25TH-29TH 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.
18th-22nd June 2018 2018

“Observe good faith and justice toward all nations. Cultivate peace and harmony with all.” 

– George Washington

NEWS   

LEDAP, NHRC Walk Against Torture in Nigeria
The Legal Defence and Assistance Project (LEDAP) in collaboration with the National Committee Against Torture (NCAT) and National Human Rights Commission (NHRC) is launched a torture prevention campaign and held an anti-torture awareness walk in Abuja on June 26, to protest against the heinous act of torture and also provide assistance to torture victims and survivors. Read more

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Group Seeks Internal Monitoring Team to Reduce Police Torture

Sterling Centre for Law and Development (SCLD) and other human rights organisations have stressed the need for the Nigerian Police to step up its internal monitoring activities to reduce and eliminate torture of suspects for confessions or punishment for detainees. Read more

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SERAP Seeks Human Rights Council Special Session over Plateau Killings

Socio-Economic Rights and Accountability Project (SERAP) has sent an open letter to all the Permanent Representatives of Member and Observer States of the UN Human Rights Council, Geneva urging their delegation to hold a special session concerning the Plateau killings. Read more

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Free, Fair Elections in Nigeria: U.S, U.K Agree to Continue Joint Funding
The United Kingdom’s Department for International Development (DFID) and the United States Agency for International Development (USAID) amended a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) to extend their joint funding arrangements to support Nigeria’s electoral processes through 2020 with an increased DFID contribution. Read more

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In 2018 Alone, 1,814 Nigerians Have Been Killed − Amnesty International
Amnesty International, a human rights group, says 1,814 people have been killed across 17 states since the beginning of 2018 — a figure that is already more than double the 894 that was recorded in the whole of 2017. Read more
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Nigerians Will Live Better Lives If Corrupt Officials Are Exposed – Falana
A human rights activist, Femi Falana, on Monday said the extensive corruption that has eaten deep into Nigeria’s fabric could be reversed if citizens speak out against the practice. Read more

NHRC to Probe Torture Allegations against SARS

The National Human Rights Commission has concluded plans for the probe of allegation of torture against men of the Special Anti-Robbery Squad (SARS) in South South and South Eastern parts of the country. NHRC’s Executive Secretary, Anthony Ojukwu made this public on June 26 while speaking at an event put in place by his agency, the Federal Ministry of Justice and the Human Rights Agenda Network (HRAN)Read more

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Research Shows Nigeria is 9th Most Dangerous Country for Women 
Nigeria has been ranked as the ninth most dangerous country for women according to a new poll by Thomson Reuters Foundation. The foundation contacted 548 experts focused on women’s issues to conduct a global perception poll to highlight the most dangerous countries for women. Read more

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NHRC Tasks Buhari On Quick Assent to Child Protection Bill

The Executive secretary of the National Human Rights Commission (NHRC), Mr. Tony Ojukwu, has called on President Muhammadu Buhari to give children a gift by granting speedy assent to the 2018 Child Protection and Enforcement Agency (establishment) Bill. Read more

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Violation of Human Rights Unacceptable — AGF

Attorney-General of the Federation and Minister of Justice, Abubakar Malami, SAN, has said violation of human rights in the country was unacceptable. According to him, torture is a clear assault on the inherent dignity and fundamental freedoms of  persons. Read more
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Global Centre for Responsibility to Protect releases Atrocity Report on Nigeria, Myanmar and Syria
“Recurring conflict in Nigeria’s “Middle Belt” region is often rooted in historical grievances over land-use and resource allocation. These disputes have been exacerbated by growing desertification in the north of Nigeria, which has driven many ethnic Fulani herdsmen, who are mainly Muslim, southward into areas traditionally farmed by settled communities that are predominately Christian.” Read full report here

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Lagos State Government Dragged before Court over New Environment Law

Chairman, Association of Waste Managers of Nigeria, AWMN, Alhaji Oladipo Egbeyemi and David Oriyomi, have dragged the Lagos State Government before a Lagos High Court sitting in Igbosere, challenging the newly enacted Lagos State Environmental Management and Protection Law of 2017. Read more
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Caribbean Court of Justice Strikes Down Mandatory Death Penalty in Barbados

The Caribbean Court of Justice (CCJ), the region’s highest court has unanimously declared the mandatory death penalty unconstitutional in Barbados, finally settling an issue which has occupied domestic and international tribunals for almost 15 years. Read more

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Cornell’s Death Penalty Worldwide Institute Training ‘A Network of African Lawyers’ To Fight Against Capital Punishment
On June 18, the Cornell Center on the Death Penalty Worldwide kicked off its second annual Makwanyane Institute Workshop. The institute aims to train capital defenders and prepare them for the intricacies of capital offense trials in many different countries. Read more

 

OPINION 


Leave No Girl Behind in Africa
Discrimination in Education against Pregnant Girls and Adolescent Mothers

The African continent has the highest adolescent pregnancy rates in the world, according to the United Nations. Every year, thousands of girls become pregnant at the time when they should be learning history, algebra, and life skills. Adolescent girls who have early and unintended pregnancies face many social and financial barriers to continuing with formal education. Read more

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Nigeria: Rising Toll of Middle-Belt Violence
Urgently Step Up Investigations; Hold Attackers to Account

 The death of at least 86 people in attacks on six villages in Plateau State, Nigeria, is the most recent in a shocking spate of reprisal violence between nomadic cattle herders and farmers. The government of President Muhammadu Buhari promised to end the violence and hold those responsible to account, but has so far failed to do so.  Read more

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Curtailing Rights’ Violations from Pollution
“Daily, human rights are infringed upon consciously or unconsciously by multinational and mining companies. These unpleasant situations have pitted host communities against multinational companies, which have resulted in loss of lives and property. The Ogoni nine debacle still remains fresh in the memories of many Nigerians from during the military era.” Read more

 

LEDAP@WORK 

LEDAP Partners With NHRC and NCAT for “Walk Against Torture”

June 26 marked the International in Support of Victims of Torture. In light of this LEDAP partnered with the National Human Rights Commission and the National Committee Against Torture to host a “Walk Against Torture” in the capital of the country, FCT-Abuja. The purpose of the walk was to raise awareness concerning the serious issue of torture in Nigeria, call for the disbandment of SARS and request that the Attorney General of the Federation seek the full implementation of the Anti-Torture Act 2017.

LEDAP at Makwanyane Institute Workshop


LEDAP Representative, Mrs.Joke Aladesanmi (3rd from left)

A representative from LEDAP attended  this year’s Cornell Center on the Death Penalty Worldwide, 2nd annual Makwanyane Institute workshop. The workshop is an intensive training workshop for capital defenders, and took place from June 18 to 28, 2018. Follow the events of the training with #makwanyaneinstitute on twitter and find out more here

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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   

Garnishee Must Be Resident Within The Jurisdiction Of The Court Making The Order?

In the recently decided case of Darsey Digital Press Ltd & Anor v. Ayo & Anor (2018) LPELR-44488(CA), the Court of Appeal held that it is a precondition to a proper garnishee proceeding that the garnishee be resident in the very State where the order is sought in accordance to Section 83 of the Sheriff and Civil Process Act. Read more

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Appeal Court awards Damages against Air France for Breach of Contract

The Court of Appeal sitting in Lagos has held that Air France was liable for breach of contract between it and one of its passengers, Mr Chidi Adebanya for compelling him to pay additional money in respect of purported excess luggage. The Court, therefore, ordered the airline to pay Mr Adebanya, N476,768.00 being the refund of the excess money paid for his luggage which was in violation of the terms of the contract between them and the cost of litigation. Read more

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Court Grants HEDA’s Judicial Review against Malami
A federal high court sitting in Lagos has granted the Human and Environment Development Agenda (HEDA), a non-governmental organisation (NGO), a leave for a judicial review against Abubakar Malami, Attorney-General of the Federation (AGF) in the Malabu oil deal. Read more

 

EVENTS  

Call For Proposals: 16 Days Activism Against Gender Based Violence
The African Women’s Development Fund (AWDF) invites proposals for the 16 Days Against Gender Based Violence. As part of AWDF’s support to the cause to eliminate Violence Against Womnen (VAW), AWDF supports the 16 Days of Activism Against Gender-Based Violence Campaign by awarding grants to women’s organisations in Africa to organise and coordinate activities around the event.
 The deadline for application is 20th July 2018. Read more
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Call for Applications: Capacity Building Workshop on Strategic Advocacy & Litigation for LGBT Human Rights Defenders in Africa
The Centre for Human Rights, Faculty of Law, University of Pretoria with the support of the Embassy of the Kingdom of the Netherlands, cordially invites you to apply for the Capacity Building Workshop on Strategic Advocacy & Litigation targeted at the promotion and protection of the human rights of lesbians, gay, bisexual, and transgender persons in Africa. Deadline for applications is 10th July 2018. Click here to apply.

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UN Human Rights Council – 38th Session

The 38th session of the United Nations Human Rights Council (UNHRC) will be held from 18 June – 6 July 2018, at the Palais des Nations, in Geneva, Switzerland. During the session, high-level discussions will be held on various human rights related issues, such as the right to privacy, rights of persons with disabilities, rights of minorities, and rights of children. Watch the sessions live here

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Nominations for the Bob Hepple Equality Award 

Nominations for the Bob Hepple Equality Award 2018 are open. Do you know of somebody who has made a significant contribution to combating discrimination or advancing equality, but who has not yet received the credit they deserve? If so, please nominate them for the fourth annual Bob Hepple Equality Award. Deadline for application is 31st July 2018. Read more

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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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NEWSLETTER FOR 11TH-15TH 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.
11th-15th June 2018 2018

Today’s human rights violations are the causes of tomorrow’s conflicts.” – 

Mary Robinson

NEWS   

Nigeria Honours Presumed Winner of Aborted 1993 Election

President Muhammadu Buhari made the unexpected announcement that from next year, June 12 would be a public holiday and commemorated as “Democracy Day”. He also gave Nigeria’s highest honour, GCFR  to Moshood Abiola who had been on track to win the 1993 election when it was annulled. Read more

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ActionAid – Perceived Lack of Neutrality of Security Agencies Fuels Insecurity

ActionAid Nigeria has lamented that perceived lack of neutrality and professionalism on the part of security agencies has manifested into diverse forms of insecurity across the country. Chairman Board of Directors, ActionAid, Ms. Patricia Donli disclosed this yesterday in Abuja while addressing the state of the nation. Read more

N1.1bn water scam : SERAP Calls for Deputy Speaker’s Prosecution

Socio-Economic Rights and Accountability Project, (SERAP) has asked the Acting Chairmen of both the Code of Conduct Bureau (CCB) and Independent Corrupt Practices and Other Related Offences Commission (ICPC) “to jointly investigate allegations of apparent conflict of interest and abuse of office involving Deputy Speaker of the House of Representatives, Mr. Lasun Yusuff using his personal company to win water contracts amounting to about N1.1 billion from the Ministry of Water Resources, and to collaborate with the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) in any such investigation.” Read more

HEDA Petitions ICPC, Seeks Probe Of Gbajabiamila

The Human and Environmental Development Agenda, has asked the Independent Corrupt Practices and other related offences Commission to investigate the capital projects allocated to Surulere 1 Federal Constituency, represented by Hon. Femi
Gbajabiamila. Read more

NNPC Rejects Falana’s FOI Request on Fuel Importation

Femi Falana, prominent human rights lawyer and a senior advocate of Nigeria, had written an FOI concerning fuel importation data.However, the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC) says it cannot honour freedom of information (FOI) requests because it is not a public corporation. Read more

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Former Governor of Plateau State Sentenced to 14 years in Prison for N1.12b Fraud

Former governor of Plateau state, Joshua Dariye,  was jailed for 14 years, after being found guilty of corruption and diversion of N1.126 billion to an unregistered company. Read more

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Former NHRC Chairman Inaugurates Civic Society to Fight Government Abuses

A former chairman of the board of the National Human Rights Commission, Chidi Odinkalu, has inaugurated a civic group to challenge the many cases of human rights abuse on country. The group is known as Civic Coalition for Democracy. Read more

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Nigerian Re-Elected Into UN Disabilities Rights Committee

Nigeria’s candidate, Danlami Basharu, has been re-elected into the UN Committee on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities for the 2019 to 2021 term, in a keenly contested election. Read more

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Argentina Moves Closer to Legal Abortion 
The Argentinian chamber of deputies is voting on a crucial bill that would legalise abortion in the first 14 weeks of pregnancy. A vote on abortion on Wednesday could transform Pope Francis’s homeland from a country where women can go to jail for having an unlawful termination to one of Latin America’s most progressive countries on reproductive rights.Read more

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Lagos State, ATC to Boost Youth Empowerment with Digital Villages
ATC Nigeria, in collaboration with the Lagos State Employment Trust Fund and Jobberman, is deploying digital villages across Lagos that will serve as Information and Communications Technology (ICT) skills acquisition centre, designed for youth empowerment. According to ATC Nigeria, access to the internet is widely seen as a human right in the eyes of millions of people around the world. Read more

Civil Society Groups Begin Good Governance Assessment In Osun

The Civil Society Coalition for Mandate Protection, the Nigerian Human Rights Community and the Green Peoples Environmental Rights Groups have embarked on a public assessment project in Osun State. The project targets about 30,000 respondents on governance in the state for the past eight years. Read more

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Group to Provide Free Legal Services For Vulnerables On Human Right Abuses in Nigeria

A group “Stop the Abuse Foundation” says it has taken upon itself to intervene in cases of human right abuses against women and children by providing free legal services for them at various legal clinics. Read more

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SERAP Institutes Court Suit Against Fashola Over ‘Corrupt, Unlawful’ Privatisation Of Electricity Sector

The Socio-Economic Rights and Accountability Project (SERAP) has sued Mr. Babatunde Fashola (SAN), Minister of Power, Works and Housing over his “failure to account for the spending on the privatisation of the electricity sector and the exact amount of post-privatisation spending on generation companies (GENCOS), distribution companies (DISCOS) and Transmission Company of Nigeria to date, and to explain if such spending came from budgetary allocations or other sources”. Read more

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IGP Approves Request by Human Rights Group to Audit all SARS Detention Cells in Nigeria

The Inspector-General of Police, Idris Ibrahim has approved the request of the National Human Rights Commission (NHRC) to commence an independent audit of detention cells in all police commands and formations in Nigeria including those of the Special Anti-Robbery Squad (SARS). Read more

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1,500 Nigerians Jailed in Italy
The Italian Ambassador to Nigeria, Stefanou Pontesilli, says no fewer than 1,500 Nigerians are serving jail terms for various offences in Italy. Read more

2.5 Million Migrants Smuggled in 2016 – UNODC

The UN Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC) said at least 2.5 million migrants were smuggled during the course of 2016. UNODC, in the first ever Global Study on Smuggling of Migrants, said migrant smuggling occurred in all parts of the world, generated an income of up to $7 billion. Read more

UNICEF Urges all Countries to Provide Fathers with Paternity Leave

The UN Children’s Fund (UNICEF) has urged all countries to provide fathers with legally paid paternity leave to enable them have adequate time to spend with their newborn babies. Read more

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US.Ambassador at Large for International Religious Freedom Visits Nigeria

Ambassador at Large for International Religious Freedom Sam Brownback will travel to Abuja, Kaduna, and Lagos, Nigeria from June 18-22. Ambassador Brownback together with Ambassador W. Stuart Symington, U.S. Ambassador to Nigeria will meet with government officials, religious leaders, and civil society groups. The Ambassadors will also tour the National Mosque and visit a refugee camp.

 

OPINION 


Human Rights Are Not a Luxury − Zeid Ra’ad Al Hussein, U.N. high commissioner for human rights.

 “We are moving backward to an era of contempt for the rights of people who have been forced to flee their homes, because the threats they face there are more dangerous even than the perils of their voyage. Backward to a time when military operations could deliberately target civilians and civilian sites such as hospitals, and chemical gases were openly used for military purposes and against innocent families.”  Read more

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Thousands of Children are Imprisoned across Africa. They Need Justice

“Young people are all but invisible in the justice system, facing ill treatment at the hands of those who should be protecting them” Read more

Sexual Harassment – a Social Ill That Wreaks Havoc

“For decades now, multiple counts of sexual harassment have been the hallmark of social coexistence in Nigeria. Hardly a day passes without a claim of sexual harassment being made against people, across genders and economic and social status.” Read more

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The Cattle Conflict Pushing Nigeria to the Edge of a Religious Civil War

“Across Africa’s most populous country, an undeclared war, triggered in part by climate change and fought over cattle, has turned Muslims and Christians against each other in a confrontation so bitter it threatens to tear Nigeria apart.” Read more

 

LEDAP@WORK 

LEDAP Calls for Developers to Create AntiTorture App

In line with LEDAP’s Anti−Torture Project aimed at addressing the police’s poor anti-torture knowledge and attitudes and at the same time empower civil societies and the public to monitor and demand for accountability wherever torture occurs. LEDAP has launched a call for App Developers to create an Application where individuals can report incidents of torture. For more information contact info@ledapnigeria.org or pamela@ledapnigeria.org

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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   

Court Passes Death Sentence on 5 men for Killing Herdsman

A Yola High Court Presided over by Justice Abdul-Azeez Waziri has sentenced five men to death for culpable homicide and for killing a herdsman. Read more

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Court Orders Adamawa Govt To Pay N660m To 659 Sacked Teachers
The National Industrial Court of Nigeria (NICN) has ordered the Adamawa government to pay N660 million to 659 sacked teachers by the Adamawa Post Primary Board. Read more

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Court Sentences Policeman to Death over Unlawful Killing
Nasarawa State High Court, has sentenced to death by hanging a Police sergeant, Vincent Manu for the offence of culpable homicide. 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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Danish Refugee Council Recruting

Danish Refugee Council (DRC) is a Danish international non-governmental organisation, which promotes and supports durable solutions to the problems faced by refugees and internally displaced people all over the world. They are currently recruiting in various positions. Find out more about the vacancies and deadlines 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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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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Group Seeks Internal Monitoring Team to Reduce Police Torture

Sterling Centre for Law and Development (SCLD) has stressed the need for the Nigeria Police to step up its internal monitoring activities to reduce and eliminate torture of suspects for confessions or punishment for detainees.

Speaking yesterday in Abuja during a rally to mark the International Day in Support of Victims of Torture, its Coordinator, Deji Ajari, said the police should be more open to external monitoring by opening up its facilities to local and international groups who should be allowed to interact with detainees to ascertain if they were being subjected to torture.

According to Ajari, the police, as law enforcement agents in the country and having more contact with members of the public, was saddled with the responsibility of securing lives and property, as well as investigate and resolve crimes.

It also maintains peace in the society, but ironically it is the agency with the most cases of torture reported against it .

“The law criminalises the use of torture and sets in place mechanisms for the prevention, detection and prosecution of cases of torture against Nigerians.

“Implementation of the act will drastically reduce the use of torture in the country. We also commend the police for the steps so far taken to end the use of torture in the country.

“These steps have started to yield results, but more should be done to accelerate the positive returns of the reforms,” he stated.

Meanwhile, the United Nations (UN) yesterday called on nations to seek ways of reducing torture and improve victims’ access to seek redress.

UN Secretary General, Antonio Guterres, said torture was unacceptable and unjustified at all times, urging governments and countries to expedite action to eradicate the practice.

He said observing the day on June 26 every year was instituted to acknowledge and honour survivors of torture globally, including those tortured for their political or other views, those caught in the fight against terrorism or those tortured because of their differences.

Civil society organisations (CSOs) also charged security operatives to obey the rule of law and adopt international best practices in the discharge of their duties.

Executive Director, Civil Society Legislative Advocacy Centre (CISLAC) and Chairman, Board of Amnesty International, Nigeria, Auwal Ibrahim Musa, said despite the country’s laws protecting detained people from torture and mistreatment, severe pains were being inflicted on suspects to force confessions from them.

In a statement, National Coordinator, Legal Defence and Assistance Project (LEDAP), Chino Obiagwu, urged the National Human Rights Commission (NHRC), National Committee Against Torture (NCAT) and CSOs to document incidents of torture and demand prosecution of offenders in line with the provisions of the Anti-Torture Act.

 

Culled from The Guardian Website.

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LEDAP, NHRC Walk Against Torture in Nigeria

The Legal Defence and Assistance Project (LEDAP) in collaboration with the National Committee Against Torture (NCAT) and National Human Rights Commission (NHRC) is launching a torture prevention campaign and anti-torture awareness walk in Abuja, June 26, to protest against the heinous act of torture and also provide assistance to torture victims and survivors. This is done to mark the 2018 International day for Support of Victims of Torture.This was announced in a press release by the National Coordinator of LEDAP, Mr. Chino Obiagwu. According to him, the rate of torture in Nigeria is on a high and is mostly done by law enforcement agencies against innocent victims.“In Nigeria, there are daily reports of torture of suspects by police, military and other law enforcement agencies, which are in not in accordance with the constitutional provision prohibiting torture. The perpetrators are not prosecuted and victims are unable to seek redress.

“LEDAP also uses this medium to call on the National Human Rights Commission (NHRC), National Committee Against Torture (NCAT) and Civil Society Organizations (CSOs) to document incidents of torture and demand prosecution of offenders in line with the provisions of the Anti-Torture Act.”

Culled from The Guardian Website

 

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LEDAP Warns Tertiary Institutions Against Post -UTME Screening

The Legal Defence 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.

LEDAP, in separate letters to the Minister of Education, Mallam Adamu Adamu, alongside heads of Universities, Polytechnics and Colleges of Education, obtained by The Guardian said the court had declared the conduct of post-UTME in the nation’s tertiary institutions as illegal.

The letter signed by LEDAP’s National Coordinator, Chino Obiagwu read in part: “It has come to our notice that some universities, polytechnics and colleges of education in Nigeria are currently selling forms for post-UTME examinations and other screening tests for admission into the institutions. Please take notice that there is a subsisting Judgment of 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 JAMB can conduct examinations and give admissions into tertiary institutions by virtue of Section 5 (1) (2) of the agency’s act. Furthermore, the court declared the post-UTME conducted by the institutions as illegal, and further issued a perpetual injunction restraining them from conducting post-UTME or any other form of examination.”

Subsequently, the letter stated that it is a contravention of the order of court for any of the concerned institutions to continue conducting screening tests and demanded that they stop selling these forms and immediately refund all the money collected from candidates.

LEDAP warned that if the erring institutions fail to comply with the court’s directive, it would file a contempt charge against them.

Culled from the Guardian Website.