Human rights advocacy: NHRC to float Radio, TV stations in Nigeria

Tony Ojukwu.
Tony Ojukwu.
Human rights advocacy: NHRC to float Radio, TV stations in Nigeria

The National Human Rights Commission (NHRC) reaffirmed its commitment to establish NHRC Radio and Television outfits to enhance the promotion and protection of human rights across Nigeria.

This was contained in a communique jointly signed by the Executive Secretary/Chief Executive Officer of the Commission Dr. Tony Ojukwu and the Chairperson Governing Council of the NHRC Dr. Salamatu Hussaini Suleiman during the just concluded February statutory council meeting which took place at the headquarters of the Commission in Abuja.

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This initiative to establish the NHRC Media outfit, aligns with Section 6(m)(n) of the NHRC Act 1995 as amended, this underscores the Council’s commitment to strengthening human rights advocacy nationwide. As part of this effort, the Council paid a scheduled courtesy call on the Director General of the National Broadcasting Commission.O

On security matters, Council expressed deep concern over the prevailing insecurity in Nigeria, this is attributed to activities such as armed banditry, kidnapping, youth unrest, herders’ invasion, and the destruction of farmlands.

To address these challenges, recommendations were made for youth engagement through quality and vocational education, youth empowerment, establishment of state police, and intensified human rights promotion and protection.

Additionally, Council advocated for the Federal Government to ensure truly free and compulsory education in Nigeria as a means to alleviate poverty and empower the youth. Significantly, Council recommended amending the 1999 Constitution to enforce the economic, social, and cultural rights of citizens, recognizing education as pivotal to realizing these rights and achieving the Sustainable Development Goals.

The meeting also highlighted the submission of the National Action Plan on promotion and protection of human rights and the National Action Plan on business and human rights to the Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights (OHCHR). These documents serve as benchmarks for Nigeria’s human rights standards and its commitment to fulfilling international and national human rights obligations. The Council urged government to allocate necessary resources for their full implementation.

Reports from Council Committees on Appointment, Promotion, and Discipline, as well as Finance and General Purposes, were presented and discussed. Notably, 297 candidates met the required pass mark and were recommended for promotion, reflecting the Council’s commitment to meritocracy and efficient NHRC operations.

Furthermore, the Council reviewed complaints of human rights violations received by the Commission’s Complaint Handling Departments. These complaints, covering civil and political rights, economic, social, and cultural rights, women’s and children’s rights, and vulnerable groups, were promptly addressed in adherence to established procedures, demonstrating the NHRC’s unwavering commitment to promotion and protection of human rights.

The Governing Council of the NHRC remains an independent, policy-driven, and internationally recognized body committed to addressing critical human rights issues and strengthening their promotion and protection in Nigeria.

Accredited with “A Status” by the Global Alliance of National Human Rights Institutions, the NHRC of Nigeria will continue to uphold the Paris Principles for National Human Rights Institutions, having been reaccredited for the 5th time on November 3, 2023.

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