Commission Seeks Better Welfare For Refugees

As Nigeria joins the rest of the International Community to mark World Refugees Day, the National Human Rights Commission (NHRC) has called on the government and other duty-bearers to redouble their efforts in protecting and supporting refugees, migrants, Asylum seekers and internally displaced persons.

The Executive Secretary of the Commission, Dr Tony Ojukwu, who stated this in Abuja on the sidelines of the 2024 World Refugees Day, which is marked every 20th of June, noted that refugees and other persons living in similar conditions deserve to be protected bearing in mind that they are usually not the architects of their plights but victims of circumstances.

Ojukwu observed that the 2024 theme of the celebration, “Solidarity with Refugees”, is a reminder of the fact that everyone needs a home where basic survival needs are met, not just a hostile environment which exposes one to different forms of human rights violations.

According to the Executive Secretary, it is imperative to celebrate the strength and courage of people who have been forced to flee their homes or country against their wish due to conflicts or persecution, adding that it is necessary to map out solutions to resettle and help them to have a better livelihood.

“Nigeria has its fair share of this population of concern arising from communal clashes, banditry, farmers and herders clashes, Boko Haram etc. These have affected their rights to health care, education, employment, dignity of the human person, right to housing, land and property etc, ” he said. 

“According to the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNCHR), World Refugee Day is a time to shine a light on the rights, and dreams of refugees, helping to mobilize the political will and resources to enable the refugees to enjoy a new lease of life.

“The Nigerian government needs to focus their attention on the plight of refugees to bring the numbers of refugees to the barest minimum,” he added. 

Dr Ojukwu reaffirmed the Commission’s steadfastness in advocating for the rights of refugees and called on the government and stakeholders to do more in the protection of refugees and ensure that they are safely returned to their communities as enshrined in the Refugee Convention and Human Rights Treaties.

 

Lantana Nasir

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