“I will respect your rights regardless of who you are. I will uphold your rights even if I disagree with you. When anyone’s human rights are denied, everyone’s rights are undermined, so I will stand up; I will raise my voice; I will take action; I will use my right to stand up for your rights.” This was the pledge taken by officers of different security agencies as part of activities marking International Human Rights Day and the 70th Anniversary of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights (UDHR), organized by United Nations Information Centre (UNIC) Lagos and the National Human Rights Commission (NHRC), South West Zone, on 10 December 2018.
The officers drawn from the Nigerian Police, Nigerian Army, Immigration, Customs, Federal Road Safety Corps (FRSC), Nigeria Security and Civil Defence Corps (NSCDC) as well as the National Agency For The Prohibition Of Trafficking In Persons (NAPTIP) recited the Human Rights Pledge while the most senior officers signed the Human Rights Commitment Board.
In his video message on the Human Rights Day, and watched by over 70 particioants, the United Nations Secretary General, Mr. Antonio Guterres, noted that “Now more than ever, our shared duty is clear: Let us stand Up for human rights for everyone, everywhere. We must stand up for equality, justice and human dignity.”
Welcoming the participants, the Director of UNIC Lagos, Mr Ronald Kayanja, informed that the UDHR was the most widely translated document in the world, a feat contributed to by UNIC Lagos through its translation of the UDHR to Fulfude, Hausa, Igbo, Ijaw, Idoma, Kanuri, Pidgin English and Yoruba languages. He later shared copies of the UDHR to all participants while each of the Security Agencies was also presented with a framed canvass poster of the UDHR.
The Zonal Coordinator of the National Human Rights Commission (NHRC), South-West, Mr. Lucas Koyejo, advised the security agents to always respect citizens’ rights and remain professional in the discharge of their duties during the forthcoming elections in Nigeria.
In another event, on the same day, to commemorate the Human Rights Day, UNIC in collaboration with White Technology hosted students from ten High schools for a Digital Arts Competition on the UDHR.
The Digital Arts Competition challenges the creative thinking of the students as they expressed their understanding of the various Articles of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights in a digital form. The participating schools include Akande Dahunsi Memorial Junior High School, Dowen College and Ephraim High School. Mr. Eze Obioma-Igwe of Dowen College Lagos came top in the competition. �&