Following Nigeria's first UPR in 2009, several recommendations were accepted by Nigeria which included re-form of the justice system including penitentiary centres and national police, adopting comprehensive legislation with regard to extrajudicial executions and torture by the police and to expedite amendments to the Human Rights Commission Act, including ensuring its independence. The above notwithstanding, torture and other forms of inhuman degrading treatment or punishment including unlawful killings by security/armed personnel in the country remain widespread. The UPR presents a unique multi-sectoral opportunity to fast track implementation of UNCAT/OPCAT by holding member states accountable.
The methodology adopted is the doctrinal approach hinged on exposition and analysis. It involves a vast collection of data. This paper will therefore examine the implementation outcome of the recommendations to Nigeria during the 2009 and 2013 Universal Periodic Review (UPR). In addition, it will assess the impact of effective tracking of the implementation as well as the benefit of documentation of information and evidence in prevention of torture and rehabilitation of torture victims. The paper will closely examine issues such as access to rehabilitation services for Torture Victims, monitoring of places of detention, access to documentation of torture allegation, treatment of detainees with mental disabilities, and investigation of extrajudicial killings and how these were used as key advocacy issues for the Universal Periodic Review of Nigeria.
It will also discuss the follow up interventions on these. The paper will also examine factors that promote or deter the implementation of these recommendations. In addition, it will recommend some strategies that IRCT member centres may creatively utilize to enhance the public awareness on torture prevention and rehabilitation issues in their respective jurisdictions, its visibility/organizational profile, strategic stakeholders' engagement, its local and international advocacy strategies, and provide future project directions/funding opportunities.
The paper concludes that to ensure effective implementation of UPR recommendations, Article 14 of the UN Convention Against Torture , General Comment 3 as well as other provisions of the UNCAT, OPCAT, a multi-sectoral approach need to be adopted. This requires implementation of comprehensive and sustainable programmes with clear strategies for monitoring / tracking of these and their impact. It recommends increased utilization of the UPR process to fast track advocacy for global compliance on torture prevention and rehabilitation.
Training and capacity building as well as provision of other support prior, during and after the UPR for non-state actors including IRCT member centres are recommended. Member States need also be sensitized on the need to follow through with the UPR recommendations to them and on ways to implement and track these as these will improve their global human rights rating, as well as performance record in subsequent their future UPR.
Funding & No Conflicts Declaration
This is not currently being funded and there is no conflict of interest declaration.