June 28, 2018

Violation of human rights unacceptable — AGF

Malami, open grazing

Abubakar Malami (SAN) . Photo by Gbemiga Olamikan

Attorney-General of the Federation and Minister of Justice, Abubakar Malami, SAN, has said violation of human rights in the country was unacceptable.

According to him, torture is a clear assault on the inherent dignity and fundamental freedoms of  persons.

Abubakar Malami (SAN) . Photo by Gbemiga Olamikan

Malami, who was represented by Solicitor General of the Federation and Permanent Secretary, Federal Ministry of Justice, Mr. Dayo Apata, stated this at the commemoration of 2018 UN International Day Against Torture in Nigeria in Support of Victims of Torture, in Abuja.

In a statement by his Special Adviser, Salihu Isah, Malami said the violation of human rights was wicked, dehumanizing and had been criminalized in Nigeria with the enactment of the Anti-Torture Act 2017.

He said:  “The right to freedom from torture is non-negotiable.  However, the application of torture to extract confession from suspects or as a way of punishment amounts to by-pass of the judicial process by not subjecting the suspects to the time- honored practice of trial suspects in the regular courts.”

He said there was  no doubt about the commitment of the administration in ensuring that acts of torture were identified and penalized wherever and whenever it occurred.

In his remark, Chairman, National Committee Against Torture, Dr. Samson Sani Ameh, SAN, said the mandate of the committee was to visit places of detention in Nigeria promptly and impartially to examine any allegation therein, to receive and consider communications on torture from individuals, CSOs and government institutions.

Also speaking at the event, Executive Secretary, National Human Rights Commission, NHRC, Anthony Ojukwu, explained that the violation of the right to freedom from torture, inhuman, degrading treatment or punishment had over the years, remained one of the highest recorded violations against law enforcement agents.

He disclosed that the commission had kick-started the process of interventions, which include fact-finding visit to detention facilities across the country and public hearing or interface on operations of SARS, the enactment of the Anti-Torture   Act 2017 by the National Assembly which is a response to outcries about torture   across the country, among others.