Inmates at the female prison in Kirikiri, Lagos, have called upon the justice system to expedite their cases to enable them benefit from their fundamental human rights. They made the call at an event to commemorate Human Rights Day, 10 December 2015, held in the Kirikiri Prison. The event was organised by UNIC Lagos and a group of NGOs. It also marked the culmination of activities of 16 days of activism to end violence against women.
In a statement read to the participants at the event by the Director UNIC Lagos Mr. Ronald Kayanja, the UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon noted that the current global challenges should remind us the fundamental freedoms which were the foundations for the Universal Declaration of Human Rights. He recounted the four basic freedoms as: freedom of expression, freedom of worship, freedom from want, and freedom from fear.
Mr. Ban also noted that “millions of refugees and internally displaced persons are a tragic product of the failure to fulfil the freedom from fear,” adding that “people run from war, violence and injustice across continents and oceans, often rising their lives.” He called on the international community to guarantee the right of all people to seek asylum without discrimination.
The Deputy Registrar in the Lagos State Judiciary, Mrs O.A. Okunuga, called upon the inmates to remain patient and hopeful as their cases are attended to in accordance with legal procedures.
On her part the Officer in Charge of the Female Prison, Mrs Lizzie Ekpendu, thanked the United Nations Information Centre and the partner NGOs for the support provided to the prisons. She noted that a number of NGOs make contributions that enable the prison authorities purchase items used in rehabilitation programmes, including skill acquisition materials.
The UNIC Director, Mr. Kayanja, thanked the partners NGOs for the collaborative efforts that have ensured that many awareness creation activities on the rights or women were conducted during the 16 Days of Activism. He also commended the Prison authorities for keeping the Prison in a good habitable condition.
UNIC Lagos and the NGO partners donated food items to the inmates. More than 200 inmates participated in the Human Rights Day event.