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NHRC to grill Tinubu, Atiku, Obi, others on human rights issues

From Godwin Tsa, Abuja

National Human Rights Commission (NHRC) is to grill presidential candidates for the 2023 polls on their human rights issues in the country.

Its Executive Secretary, Chief Tony Ojukwu, disclosed this, yesterday, at the Civil Society Organisation Forum organised to mark the 2022 International Human Rights Day, with the theme” Dignity, Freedom and Justice For All.”

He said the commission would organise a Presidential Town Hall meeting on human rights based issues for the presidential candidates.  Expected at the meeting are candidates of the All Progressives Congress (APC), Bola Tinubu; Peoples Democratic Party, Atiku Abubakar; Labour Party, Peter Obi; Nigeria Peoples Party (NNPP), Rabiu Kwankwaso, among others.

“This is not the regular town hall meeting that people know, where presidential candidates go and talk about their manifestoes, on economy, security etc. No! We want to make human right an issue.  What that means is that political office holders must advert their minds on human rights that concern the country as well. It is not only about economy and security. 

“So this presidential town hall meeting is going to gauge the pulse of presidential candidates on what they think about key human rights issues like prison congestion, peaceful protest, participation of women in politics, social gender based violence, disobedience to court orders and all these key human rights issues that nobody is talking about. So, we think that this should also be part of what our leaders should be talking about. That is the essence of the town hall meeting.” OJukwu said.

Meanwhile, Minister of Women Affairs, Dame Pauline Tallen  at the forum called for an increased efforts in the promotion and protection of human rights of vulnerable groups of the society.

She called on the justice system to address cases of rape and gender based violence, which she said, are on the increase on daily basis.

She lamented the manner women and the girl-child were being abused and enjoined civil society organisations to step up the fight against violation of people’s fundamental rights.

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