As a Nigerian and as a bonafide citizen of this entity called Nigeria, there are some basic human rights that you are entitled to. You are not to beg for it, it is your right but unfortunately, most Nigerians are ignorant of this basic rights and are thereby open to a various form of abuse.
As a Nigerian, you have rights, duties, and privileges you are entitled to as enshrined n Chapter IV of the 1999 Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria and are officially known as Fundamental Rights.
As good as these laws are, they have exceptions. Like they say in law, there is an exception to every law. In this write-up, we shall try to highlight the exception to some basic human right that every Nigerian must know.
-Right To Life
This is the basis of all the basics. It is the most important of all the rights. Every citizen of Nigeria must enjoy this right.The right of existence. Nobody has the right to deny you of this right. , except in the execution of a judgment of the court in view of a criminal offence.
Exception to this law-
However, with every right (as you will see below), there are exceptions. In regard to the right to life, the exceptions are:
If s/he dies as a result of the use of reasonable force for the defence of any person from unlawful violence or for the defence of property
If s/he dies as a result of the use of reasonable force in order to effect a lawful arrest or to prevent the escape of a person lawfully detained; or
If s/he dies as a result of the use of reasonable force for the purpose of suppressing a riot, insurrection or mutiny.
– Right To Dignity
This right basically talks about the right of every citizen not to subjected to any form of torture or inhuman/degrading treatment, slavery or servitude and no Nigerian should be held in circumstances which are not dignified.
‘Forced labour’ doesn’t include:
any labour required in consequence of the sentence or order of a court;
any labour required of members of the Armed Forces, Police Force, compulsory national service
in the case of persons who have conscientious objections to service in the armed forces of the Federation, any labour required instead of such service;
any labour required which is reasonably necessary for the event of any emergency or calamity threatening the life or well-being of the community; or
any labour or service that forms part of normal communal or other civic obligations of the well-being of the community.
– Right To Freedom Of Expression
Every Nigerian is entitled to freedom of expression, including the freedom to hold opinions and to receive and impart ideas and information without interference, and is entitled to own, establish and operate any medium for the dissemination of information, ideas, and opinions:
Execution of a court order or sentence
Lawful arrest for commission of an offence or to prevent commission of an offence
Restrictions placed on an individual who is under 18 years old for the purpose of his/her education or welfare
Restrictions placed on people suffering from infectious diseases, persons of unsound mind, and drug/alcohol addicts, which are imposed for their care and treatment and/or the protection of the community.
Immigration/Border protection and lawful expulsion or extradition
Only persons authorised by the Government upon fulfilling conditions laid down by an Act of the National Assembly may own, establish or operate a television or wireless broadcasting station.
Laws validly created for the purpose of preventing the disclosure of information received in confidence, maintaining the authority and independence of courts or regulating telephony, wireless broadcasting, television or the exhibition of cinematograph films
Laws validly created for the purpose of imposing restrictions on Government official or members of the Armed Forces/Police or other government security agencies.
– Right To Freedom From Discrimination
No citizen of Nigeria is to be subjected to any disabilities or restrictions based solely on the fact that he/she is a member of a particular community, ethnic group, place of origin, sex, religion or political opinion, or circumstances of his/her birth.
No citizen of Nigeria is to be accorded any privilege or advantage that is not accorded to citizens of Nigeria of other communities, ethnic groups, places of origin, sex, religions or political opinions, or circumstances of his/her birth.
Restrictions with respect to the appointment of any person to any office under the State or as a member of the Armed Forces/ Police Force or to an office in the service of a body, corporate established directly by any law in force in Nigeria.
– Right To Freedom Of Assembly And Association
As a Nigerian, you have the right to assembly and mix freely with another person or group of people, and he/she may form or belong to any political party, trade union or other association.
The right does not entitle any person to form, take part in the activity or be a member of a secret society.
The right to form or belong to a political party is subject to the powers of the Independent National Electoral Commission to recognise political parties as validly formed and meeting all the relevant criteria.
– Right To Own Property
Every citizen of Nigeria has the right to acquire and own immovable property anywhere in Nigeria.
Compulsory acquisition by the Government in certain stated circumstances (and upon prompt payment of compensation)
Valid laws dealing with tax, penalties for forfeiture, enemy property, temporary possession for environmental reasons and so on.
In as much as it is important for every Nigerian to know his or her basic human right, it is also important to know that there are exceptions to these laws and try to respect those exceptions.
Additional Input by Lawpadi