Human Rights: Why Nigeria Scored Low In SERAP’s Rating
Monday, December 10, was Human Rights Day and very few Nigerians were aware it even held.
The attitude of the people towards a thing will always let you know how much of it they have.
Nigerians like money, but they will always ask you, who does not like money?
Like our closeness to the Yuletide is, so is that statement to truth.
Their desire to be wealthy could be seen in the resources that abound in the nation – precious stones, zinc, aluminium, silver, gold, diamond (if you are not sure of this one, go to Mayo-Sina, a mineral rich area on the Mambilla Plateau in Nguroje, Sardauna Local Government Area of Taraba State) and even those in liquid form which is flowing money into the nation’s coffers.
Just one of the resources is giving the nation over 90% of its export earnings, in case that did not sink.
Ironically over 90 million (47%) of the nation’s people have, however, remained in poverty because their government has failed to deliver their rights to wealth to them.
A people bent on their knees for the task master, they have indirectly become, with many finding their route to wealth “any how”. We must make am (selling of votes is a typical example of how bent they have become).
One aspect of Human Rights that Nigerians have all suffered from is that of Equality, a Senior Legal Adviser to the Socio-Economic Right and Accountability Project (SERAP), Bamisope Adeyanju, told Bounce News.
The story of creation said man was not supposed to dominate fellow man, but for Adeyanju, Nigerians have experience inequality from year to year, with many persons in the nation more equal than the others like the animal farm story.
Wealth is supposed to go round, but the very few who find their way to government have continued to hold it down, depriving the people rights to education, right to equality, rights to (good) health and many more.
“Despite the fact that the Nigerian government had at different international engagements promised to uphold human rights and all of that, the human rights situation in Nigeria has been very low
“For instance, courts have granted El-Zakzaky bail, the government is still holding him.
“The same goes with Dasuki and Deji Adeyanju who, according to reports, had perfected his bail, but the government filed fresh charges against him.
“There is so much human rights violation in Nigeria and despite efforts of organisations like SERAP and some others to get judgement, you would find that there are so many judgements on ground that the Nigerian government has refused to enforce.
“SERAP has at least four judgements that the Nigerian government has refused to obey.
“A judgement given by honourable justice Idris of the Federal high Court, now a Court of Apple Judge.
“The man actually gave SERAP judgement on the fact that the Federal Government should release the looters' names.
“While that judgement was partially enforced – some names were released – but apart from releasing the name as stated in the judgement, the amount of loot recovered and what the money was used for; up till now, that part of the judgement has not been adhered with.
“We also have a judgement about the budget padding of 2016, but up till now the President has refused to adhere.
“We got a judgement that the president should make sure that persons that were indicted in the report should be prosecuted. Up till now, nothing has been done.
“In recent time, the allegation of bribery against governor Abdullahi Ganduje of Kano State, SERAP wrote to the President and the Attorney General of the Federal to direct the anti-corruption agencies to investigate the man.
“Despite the fact that you are a sitting governor, the constitution does not preclude a sitting governor from being investigated.
“The only thing you cannot do to a sitting governor is to prosecute.
We gave the president 14 days and he refused to act before we had to head to court on Friday, requesting that it should compel the president to do the needful,” she said.
The signs are everywhere, that a nation with a government that gives certain rights to some persons above others will not go forward.
This inequality, according to SERAP, has resulted to poverty in the land with some persons "having more access to the national cake than others".
“We know that poverty largely contributes to corruption,” she stressed.
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The statement emphasises the need for the government to uphold the nation’s constitution on the equality of its citizens and again highlights why that government must make proper investment in the nation’s education system.
Right to good education is one thing every Nigerians’ have, but Bounce News saw children in Ugbedomagwu in Igalamela-Odolu Local Government Area of Kogi State that were not in school.
Education from formal or informal means is what empowers an individual to truly create wealth, but in Nigeria, even the citizens will make you believe otherwise.
Wisdom was what made many like King Solomon rich, but this wisdom has been identified as the application of knowledge which King Solo demonstrated when he delivered that historic judgement between two women, one dead child and one living child.
On the fight against corruption that the current administration identifies as its strength, SERAP, insisted that it was selective, citing the stories around the leaked video of the Kano State governor.
The wealth of the people will never be evenly distributed where there is inequality.
Until Nigeria begins to address these challenges truly, the Human Rights Day, may never make sense to its citizens.
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