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FG sets up committee to monitor compliance with laws against torture

FG sets up committee to monitor compliance with laws against torture
September 11
11:09 2022

The federal government has inaugurated a committee to monitor the compliance of stakeholders in the Nigerian criminal justice system with legislation against torture.

The committee was inaugurated by Abubakar Malami, attorney-general of the federation, in Abuja.

In a statement on Sunday, the National Human Rights Commission (NHRC) quoted Malami to have said the committee is expected to eradicate torture and other related human rights abuses.

Malami said poor funding was the bane of previous committees set up on torture, stressing that there is a need for adequate funding to ease the work of the current committee.

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The attorney-general added that the committee has a broad mandate to deal with issues of torture in Nigeria in accordance with the United Nations convention against torture.

“The committee’s terms of reference are: To engage and liaise with Committee Against Torture (CAT) and regional human rights mechanisms in the context of country reporting, interactive dialogue or facilitation of visits by special procedure mandate holders or the subcommittees on the prevention of torture,” the statement reads.

“To organise and facilitate the preparation of reports to CAT and regional human rights mechanisms, and of responses to communication, follow up questions and recommendations or decisions received from such mechanism.

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“To coordinate data collection and information gathering from government agencies, national assembly and the judiciary for the reporting and follow up.

“To foster and lead consultations for reporting and follow up with the National Human Rights Commission and civil society organisations.

“To receive and consider communications on torture from individuals, CSOs and government institutions.

“To ensure education and information regarding the prohibition against torture are fully included in the training of law enforcement and public officers.

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“To prepare quarterly briefings to the HAGF on cases of torture and propose appropriate administrative/Judicial intervention.

“Propose a review of anti-torture legislation and further develop a national anti-torture policy.”

The committee comprises officials from the federal ministry of justice, NHRC, Nigeria Police Force, Legal Aids Council, Nigeria Correctional Service, Nigeria Security and Civil Defence Corps, Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, Department of State Services, the Nigerian army and Nigerian Bar association among others.

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