The President of the African Court on Human and Peoples Right, Justice Sylvain Ore led other judges of the court on a courtesy call to the President of the Nigerian Bar Association, Paul Usoro, SAN at the NBA Headquarters, in Abuja.
In his address, Justice Sylvain Ore noted that the judges of the African Court on Human and Peoples Right were in Nigeria to advocate the need for the Nigerian State to make a declaration of the African Charter on Human and Peoples Right. Justice Ore said that of the thirty countries that have ratified the African Charter, only nine have made declarations of the charter. He said that it is only when this declaration is made that Nigerians and Nigerian civil societies may have access to the court. The President of the African Court on Human and Peoples Right identified the Nigerian Bar Association as a critical stakeholder in ensuring that the Federal Government makes a Declaration on the African Charter on Human and Peoples Rights.
Responding, the President of the Nigerian Bar Association, Paul Usoro, SAN decried the incessant cases of disobedience of court order by State agencies in Nigeria and Africa as a whole. Mr. Usoro noted that the reluctance of government to make the declaration on the African Charter will not be unconnected to the fact that state actors are the most frequent violators of human rights. The NBA President advised the leadership of the court to exercise stronger advocacy by engaging the legislature, the national judiciary, the media and labour in the cause. The NBA President thanked the President of the Court for identifying the Bar as a valuable stakeholder and he promised the court of the support of the Bar.
Also in attendance at the meeting were the General Secretary of the Nigerian Bar Association, Mr. Jonathan Gunu Taidi and the Assistant Publicity Secretary of the Nigerian Bar Association, Akorede Habeeb Lawal, Esq.