The National Human
Rights Commission (NHRC) said it settled 82 out of the 128 cases of rights violation it received in Akwa Ibom in the last one year.
The state Coordinator of NHRC, Mr Tony Iji, made the disclosure in an interview with newsmen in Uyo recently.
He said that the cases it so far treated in the state involved unlawful arrest, deprivation of right to property, unlawful termination of employment and wife battery.
Other issues handled, he added, were child abandonment, denial of basic rights, infliction of injury on victims and communal conflicts.
Iji said relief had also been obtained for victims of human rights abuses, with many families involved being re-united.
He added that “through our intervention, a number of people wrongly detained have been released; fathers have been made to pay for upkeep of their children hitherto abandoned.
“We can compel court appearance because once our decision is approved by the commission’s governing council and registered in the High Court, it becomes a court decision.’’
The NHRC coordinator said that the cases were handled at no cost to the victims “because the commission is a service-driven organisation.”
He noted that the remaining 46 cases were yet to be handled “due to bureaucracy and due process.’’
He said that the commission had been collaborating with the media, NGOs, ministries, departments and government agencies to carry out its assignments.
He stressed that, “we have a mandate to embark on enlightenment campaign to promote issues of human rights.
“Awareness on rights issues among residents is now high compared with the situation a year ago.
“We also protect people from arbitrary arrest by the police and other state actors, and enforce compliance with the decisions of the commission.’’
The coordinator said officials of the commission in the state had been going round schools to educate pupils and students on the provisions of the Akwa Ibom State Child Rights Law 2008.
Iji, who appealed to the citizens to avail themselves of the services of the commission, thanked the state government for the support so far given to it.
The National Human