By Vivian Okejeme Abuja
The Executive Secretary of the National Human Right Commission(NHRC), Mr. Tony Ojukwu, yesterday said the Commission has been at the forefront of campaign for the deposit of the declaration for African Court, contained on Article 34(6) of the protocol by the Nigeria government.
Mr Ojukwu revealed this during the meeting of the delegation of the African court on Human and Peoples Right with Non-Governmental Organisation, in Abuja.
According to the Commission, it had in letters dated 24th May 2013, and 11th November 2013, written and visited the relevant government officials emphasizing the need to expand the protection space by Nigeria marking the declaration.
Speaking at the event, he explained that the delegation’s visit to Nigeria, is to enlighten stakeholders about the African Court on Human and Peoples’ Rights.
He further informed that delegation is on a mission to encourage Nigeria to do the needful by depositing the Declaration pursuant to Articles 34 (6) of the Protocol to the African Charter on Human and PeopIes’ Rights on the Establishment of an African Court on Human and People’s Rights.
He therefore, reiterated its call on the government of Nigeria to make the necessary declaration and thus expand the space for protection and provision of human rights in Nigeria and Africa in general.
The President of African Court on Human and People’s Right, Justice Sylvain Oré, in his speech, called to the President Muhammad Buhari to make a declaration, recognising the competence of the court to receive cases under article 5(3) of the Protocol.
According to him, Nigeria as a big brother to the African nations, making a declaration to the protocol, will encourage other African countries to follow suit.
Also speaking, a human right lawyer, Femi Falana SAN, ensured the delegation that the visit will be the last time they will come to the country on the same issue.
‘’We are handling the matter and we will drag the federal government to do the needful.
‘’It is highly embarrassing that the Nigeria government is not among the nine West African countries that had made the declaration on the Court.
‘’ We are very optimistic that Nigeria will be the 10th country to made declaration for the African Court.