Posted by News Express | 22 October 2015 | 2,968 times
An international human rights lawyer, Mr. Charles Adeogun-Phillips, on Wednesday advised the Federal Government to create a comprehensive database of the Internally Displaced Persons in the country.
Adeogun-Phillips gave the advice in a lecture at the 13th anniversary lecture of Crusade for Justice, a human rights advocacy group, in Lagos.
He spoke on: ‘Checking the Scourge of Internally Displaced Persons, Economic and Political Refugees and Protection of their Fundamental Human Rights - The Options Open to a Responsive and Responsible Government.’
Adeogun-Phillips said that the information would assist government in meeting the basic needs of IDPs including shelter, food and medicare, as well as providing critical public infrastructure for their resettlement.
He said Nigeria had the third highest number of IDPs which was estimated at 1.5 million as at 2014.
According to him, the figure may be grossly inadequate due to the absence of a comprehensive database.
“The activities of insurgents in the North Eastern part of Nigeria have led to increase in IDPs in the country.
“However, we need a database of these persons. We need to know their names, gender and other vital information.”
Adeogun-Phillips decried the sordid state of some of the IDP camps, saying that the rights of the displaced persons were not being adequately protected.
Also speaking, Mr. Augustine Alegeh (SAN), the President, Nigerian Bar Association (NBA), urged the Federal Government to urgently intervene in making the IDP camps more habitable.
Alegeh, who was represented by Mr. Taiwo Taiwo, a former NBA Chairman, Lagos branch, commended the group for being in the fore-front of campaign for equality in the society.
In his remark, Mr. Richard Nwankwo, the President, Crusade for Justice, called for the reformation of Nigeria's justice system and law enforcement agencies.
Nwankwo said that the rights of ordinary Nigerians were being violated due to lack of access to justice.
He urged lawyers to devote more of their time to offering free legal services to such persons. (NAN)
•Photo shows IDP camp.
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