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Tuesday, June 5, 2007

the inertia of the Nigerian Government

The International Federation for Human Rights (FIDH) and Minority Rights Group International, present the alternative report submitted by FIDH affiliated member in Nigeria, Civil Liberties Organisation (CLO), at the occasion of the examination of Nigeria by the UN Committee on the Elimination of Racial Discrimination (Committee) [1] and welcome the concluding observations addressed by the Committee to the Governement of Nigeria.

Indeed, the concluding observations issued by the Committee largely reflect the main areas of concern put forward by CLO in its alternative report to the Committee. The experts expressed concern over the adverse effects on the environment of ethnic communities of large scale exploitation of natural resources in the Delta Region and other Rivers States, in particular Ogoni areas. All affected communities must be properly consulted and the Nigerian government must adopt a legislative framework setting forth « the obligation to abide by strict environmental standards as well as fair and equitable revenue distribution ». In addition, the State party must conduct investigation into the numerous allegations of human rights violations by law enforcement officials and private security personnel in these same areas.

In relation to the application of the sharia in Northern states, the Committee reiterated that Muslim women should not receive harsher sentences than other Nigerians. The State party must comply with the requirement of equal treatment before tribunals and all other organs administering justice.

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