The European Union (EU) has developed a Human Rights and Democracy Country Strategy for Nigeria for the coming years.
Speaking in Abuja at the weekend during the premiere of a Chioma Onyenwe’s stage play: “First They Came”, written by Paul Ugbede and directed by Kenneth Uphopho to commemorate the 2021 Human Rights Day, the Head of Cooperation, EU Delegation in Nigeria and ECOWAS, Ms. Cecile Tassin-Pelzer said “the 16 Days of Activism is a key highlight of the year, where we raise awareness and demand action to eradicate all forms of violence against women and girls.”
She disclosed that: “Over the course of the past 16 days, in which we addressed all aspects of this year’s theme: “Orange the world: End violence against women now!”, the EU Delegation in Nigeria participated in over 20 different events, organised by the Delegation and our implementing partners, the Nigerian government, development partners and civil society organisations.”
Tassin-Pelzer added that: “Today it is more important than ever to recall that Human Rights are universal and indivisible, and that our effects to defend them can never stop.”
She noted that the tools which EU is going to be using in the coming years to implement the Human Rights and Democracy Country Strategy for Nigeria, are Human Rights Dialogues, Statements, Campaigns, Public Events, Human Rights based approach to Development Cooperation and Thematic projects on Human Rights and Democracy that supports civil society actors promoting Human Rights and Democracy.
She however lamented that the COVID-19 pandemic has exacerbated some challenges relates to human rights, democracy and rule of law, noting that: “in many parts of the world, we have seen worrying trends: censorship and restrictions to freedom of expression, discrimination, deepening inequalities, an increase in violence against women and girls, as well as arbitrary detentions.”
She said: “We have achieves a lot, but more needs to be done. Looking to 2022 and beyond, the European Union commits to working alongside its partners to show leadership on human rights issues and continue working to strengthen the protection of human rights in Nigeria and the rest of the word.”
She noted that: “ No Human should be without rights. All human, all equal.”