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Laws to protect rights of IDPs will soon be enacted --- Dogara

23 February 2016, 08:48

Abuja - The House of Representatives is putting legislative structures in place to ensure protection of the rights of internally displaced persons (IDPs), Speaker, Yakubu Dogara, has assured.

A statement signed by Turaki Hassan, Special Adviser, Media/Public Affairs to the Speaker, said Dogara gave the assurance when received a delegation from the United Nations High Commission on Refugees (UNHCR).

The statement was issued to newsmen on Monday in Abuja.

Dogara said that efforts were on top gear by relevant committees in the House to ensure that Nigeria domesticate and ratify the UN Kampala treaty on the rights of refugees.

He said that the committees would soon conclude work on the document and submit it at plenary for further legislative action.

He said that the bill for the establishment of the proposed North-East Commission and the Kampala Commission were also before the committees.

He added the report of the committees would be brought before the House during plenary for consideration.

"Hopefully we will pass it and in no distant time, it will be ratified," he said.

Also Read: VSF to give scholarship to 30,000 orphans in Borno IDP camps

The speaker told the delegation that in recognition of the plight of IDPs and the need to rehabilitate and resettle them, the House constituted a committee on IDPs.

He said that the House would not support the call for over 2 million displaced persons to return to their communities until adequate security was provided in the affected areas.

"There is no way we can do that unless we bring the conflict to an end; it makes no sense for anybody to insist that IDPs should go back
to their communities."

"Chances are there that they may be attacked if conditions that gave rise to the crisis are not totally eliminated," he said.

Dogara said that democracy would not thrive in Nigeria if the lives of the citizens were not secured.

"As it is said, democracy is a promise that deals with life and the pursuit of happiness."

"All other promises of democracy cannot come through unless there is life. That is the most important promise of democracy," he added.

Earlier, leader of the UNHCR delegation, MVolke Turk, stressed the need for the government to find solution to the challenges facing the IDPs.

Turk is the Assistant High‎ Commissioner in charge of Protection of Rights of Refugees and IDPs.

He urged the speaker to expedite action to ensure that Nigeria domesticate and ratify the UN convention on the protection of the rights of refugees in the

According to him, ratification of the treaty will be `extremely valuable contribution’ to the protection of the rights of refugees.



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