Jul 24, 2019

Examining Security and Human Rights Issues in Nigeria’s Extractive Industry

Extractive industry means any processes that involve the extraction of raw materials from the earth to be used by consumers. It consists of any operations that remove metals, mineral and aggregates from the earth. Examples of extractive processes include oil and gas extraction, mining, quarrying and dredging.

Though the oil, mining and gas industries are central to the economies of many developing countries. At the same time, these industries often give rise to human rights problems so serious that they can devastate vulnerable communities. The whole essence of Human Rights is to traditionally protect its populace against any abuses that they are likely to face. Transnational companies (TNCs) which carry out these extractive activities violate various human rights. In Niger Delta, the local populace is not usually given prior notice before its commencement, and as a result, they violate their right to land through expropriation, right to safe environment, health, life and displacement of the population. 

These violations occur as a result of the machineries that pollutes the atmosphere. In Zamfara state, the crushing and grinding of ore to extract gold has brought about lead poisoning within the state.

Under International law, Nigeria have the primary obligation to protect, promote and fulfill human rights and must thus ensure that the companies involved in extractive activities, operating within their territory must comply with international standards.

On the issue of security, with the recent killings in Zamfara state, the illegal mining of gold in this state has brought about a high level of insecurity. The activities going on are illegal. The individuals and companies carrying on miming activities does not have the requisite license to do so. It is appalling that some traders from South Asian countries with the collaboration of some locals and elites are involved.  

What can be done to compel TNCs to respect Human Rights in Nigeria? What step should the Federal Government take to curb illegal mining activities in Zamfara state?

These issues and questions would be addressed at the Plenary Session of the NBA Annual General Conference scheduled to hold on;

Date: Monday, 26th August 2019

Time:  15.30 – 17.00

Venue: Orchid, Eko Hotel


Moderator: Deputy Ambassador, Switzerland Embassy in Nigeria

Panelists:     Adaeze Nwakobi

Prof. Wahab Egbewole, SAN

                   Isreal Usman