Our team has come up with several recommendations in response to the violations listed in the previous sections of our website.

  1. Section 12 of the 1999 constitution states that treaties, including human rights, are only applicable if it has been enacted into law by the legislative arm of the central government. The impact stems from the fact that Nigeria could have signed and committed to an international human rights document, but until it is adopted domestically into law, it is easily violated and justified by this  section. In order to make Nigeria more accountable to the international treaties it has signed, this section of the Nigerian constitution needs to be amended or the treaties need to be put into domestic law. It would alleviate the constitution from being an escape clause for the government when there are human rights violations.
  2. It is important to change the actual law of the country to be more favorable to human rights provisions. First, second generation rights need to be considered justiciable. According to the Nigerian Constitution, only first generation rights are able to be protested in court, but second generation rights are not. Since generation rights are considered interrelated and interdependent, it is important that this stem be taken to allow for the full enjoyment of all human rights.
  3. The Nigerian government should allow freedom of expression for citizens.  They should acknowledge that protesting will happen and create a system that ensures safety but also allows citizens to protest peacefully.
  4. Create an independent committee to research and prosecute those who are responsible for human rights violations.
  5. Create stricter legislation governing oil companies, especially in regards to environmental standards and compensation for local communities when oil spills and damage does occur.
  6. To consolidate democracy in order to secure more legitimate and free elections, the elections governing body, the INEC, needs to be independent, impartial and courageous in acting on its responsibilities. By addressing the autonomy and capabilities elections may continue on the right path to full democratic elections and maintain better first generation human rights.
  7. The Nigerian government needs to work with its people more and against them less. Proposing amnesty to the members of Boko Haram was not enough; the government needs to realize that part of Boko Haram’s anger stems from the injustices the corrupt government allows to happen daily, and act accordingly. The corrupt government officials/police officers  need to  be brought to justice along with Boko Haram activists in order to placate both sides of the issue in order to lessen the divide.
  8. A reorganization of the police force in general would be a beneficial action on the part of the Nigerian government. The justice system near the grassroots of the country needs to become more structured and more cohesive with its own community(ies) before it can take on an effective role of policing the streets.
  9. A lot of the tension that arises between different factions and groups of Nigeria have to do with the scarcity of resources. One group’s economic superiority over another’s will only lead to more animosity. A good way to regenerate the economy would include diversifying it and lessening Nigeria’s dependence on oil. The greater the abundance of resources to produce and procure, the less the violence and struggle associated with a scarce environment. (In his article in United States Institute of Peace, Andrew Walker suggests focusing on Nigeria’s agricultural prospective.)
  10. Almost above all, a culture of human rights needs to be introduced into Nigeria through institutionalized practices that stem from the rule of law. This law, however, needs to be formed with Nigeria’s culture, history, struggles and successes kept in mind. The best way to do so would be from down, up, from within Nigeria itself. A policy that works with the fact that Northern Nigeria is primarily Muslim and implements sharia law and yet still upholds the basic principles of human rights is an attainable goal, no matter how long the process. A structurally similar policy will have to be implemented in a similar fashion throughout Nigeria as a whole. This suggestion is probably the least likely to happen, but it is also probably the most necessary.