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NHRC to hold town hall meeting with guber candidates on human rights issues

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The National Human Rights Commission (NHRC) says it will organise a town hall meeting for governorship candidates across 18 states from February 1 to 3.

In a statement on Tuesday, Tony Ojukwu, executive secretary of the commission, announced the meeting on Monday in Abuja.

The town hall meeting is in partnership with civil society organisations (CSOs), United Nations in Nigeria, and the media.

Ojukwu said the meeting is part of the commission’s mobilising voters for election (MOVE) project aimed at ensuring improved elections.

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He said governorship candidates of all political parties will come together to highlight their plans in the area of human rights protection when elected in their states.

“Ahead of the February 2023 general elections, the National Human Rights Commission is organising a town hall for gubernatorial candidates in 18 states beginning from 1st to 3rd February 2023,” the statement reads.

“This is targeted at making human rights issues part of the election discussion, improving citizens’ participation in the general elections, deepening our democracy and the overall safety of citizens before, during after the elections.

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“Since the primary purpose of government is the security and welfare of citizens, it is important to engage governorship candidates to clearly state what they have to offer to the people, particularly their plan on human rights protection.

“It is important to extract commitments from these candidates to close the widening gap in healthcare services, education, food security, potable water, sanitation, electricity, good road networks, brutality and impunity, civil protests, and most importantly, the shrinking of civic space, etc.”

The NHRC executive secretary urged political parties and candidates to avoid hate speeches and base their campaigns on protecting human rights.

“This will further serve as a self-assessment of the commitment to social contract of democracy, ” he added.

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The town hall meeting will hold in Akwa Ibom, Abia, Enugu, Ebonyi, Niger, Delta, Rivers, Nasarawa, Plateau, Adamawa, Lagos, Oyo, Ogun, Kaduna, Cross River, Kano, Kwara, and Bauchi states.

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