NHRC Seeks Investor-friendly, Human Rights Compliant Nigeria

NHRC Seeks Investor-friendly, Human Rights Compliant Nigeria

Michael Olugbode in Abuja

The National Human Rights Commission (NHRC) yesterday said Nigeria that needs to be investor friendly while also respecting the human rights of its citizens.

The charge was given by the Executive Secretary of the Commission, Chief Tony Ojukwu at the High Level Forum on Business and Human Rights and the Launch of the National Action Plan (NAP) on Business and Human Rights in Abuja.

Ojukwu said: “Today, as we gather here, we embark on a new chapter in our collective efforts to ensure that businesses operating within our borders adhere to both nationally, regionally and internationally recognised human rights standards.

“The provision for the establishment of the National Working Group on Business and Human Rights in the NAP is to further ensure our collective responsibility to the effective implementation of the action plan.

“It also signifies our commitment to fostering collaboration and coordination among relevant stakeholders, including government agencies, businesses, civil society organisations, Labour/Trade Unions, human rights defenders and community representatives.”

According to him, Nigeria can chart a course towards implementing the NAP on business and human rights, promoting responsible business conduct and addressing human rights impacts.

“This high-level forum provides a platform for robust discussions, knowledge-sharing, and the exchange of ideas on how best we can implement the NAP and make our country investor-friendly while respecting human rights.

“We have the privilege of engaging with experts, practitioners, and thought leaders from various sectors who will contribute their invaluable insights and experiences.

“Through these deliberations, we aim to identify practical strategies, innovative approaches, and effective mechanisms to ensure that businesses respect and protect human rights throughout their operations and value chains,” he stressed.

The NAP on business and human rights serves as the guiding framework, providing a roadmap for integrating human rights considerations into business practices.

“This momentous occasion marks a significant milestone in our journey towards promoting responsible business practices and upholding human rights in Nigeria,” Ojukwu said.

In her welcome address, the Chairperson of the Governing Council of the NHRC, Dr. Salamatu Suleiman said that business activities have a profound impact on societies, economies, and the lives of individuals.

She stated that it was therefore imperative that the country ensures its activities align with human rights principles, respect the dignity and wellbeing of all individuals, and contribute to sustainable development.

She added: “This forum serves as a platform for dialogue, knowledge exchange, and collaboration among key stakeholders, including government representatives, business leaders, civil society organisations, and human rights advocates.

“By engaging in open and constructive discussions, we can identify challenges, explore innovative solutions, and forge partnerships to promote responsible business conduct and protect human rights.”

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