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UDUS Holds 29th Inaugural Lecture

On Thursday the 9th of December 2021, the Management of Usmanu Danfodiyo University, Sokoto State held its 29th inaugural lecture programme at the university’s main auditorium on the main campus. The theme for the lecture was “The Parable of International Law: Forward-Backward of the Concept in the Context of Human Rights and Armed Conflict” by Prof Abubakar Sani Ridwan Matazu, a professor of International Law, UDUS.

The program was attended by principal officers of the university, academic and non-academic staff, students and the general public. 

During the lecture, Matazu disclosed that the theme does not intend to cater for international law generally, but it does so in a concise manner and that is why the word ‘parable’ features conspicuously. Meaning that the story of international law is a brief one as the word parable suggests. Therefore, it is a short story illustrating spiritual and moral ideas which he considers the two laws to be.

“The inaugural lecture is concerned mainly on issues related to the development and challenges of the international arena with reference to human rights and armed conflict. In this sense, the presentation focused more on public International Law rather than the private International Law,” he said.

He gave justice to some issues while clarifying some ambiguities in some terms and concepts, stressing that: “Every society, irrespective of its population, makes a legal framework (law) under which it functions and develops. The laws are referred to as municipal laws. “

Matazu further mentioned that, as for the human right, human beings are born free to enjoy all rights, the disregard of which only results in barbarous acts which outrage mankind and this will instil fear and negate the highest aspiration and civilization of common people. 

Adding also, a country’s achievement and civilization are measured on how best it protects human rights.

“Human rights are the basic rights and freedoms that belong to every person in the world, most especially Nigeria, from birth until death. They apply regardless of where you are from, what you believe in and how you choose to live your life. They can never be taken away, although they can sometimes be restricted. Like, if a person breaks the law or in the interest of national security.

“All these rights are written in constitutional of the federal republic of Nigeria in different sections and acts which are called Fundamental right,” he added.

The professor stressed that there are currently many cases of abuse by some armed groups like bandits, kidnappers, Boko Haram and others. All these armed groups have restricted certain human rights like movement, especially in Nigeria. They have put fear in every human heart which is denying them of moving from one geographical region to another.

“Boko Haram continued to commit grave human rights abuses in the Northeast, including killings and abductions of civilians, which amounted to war crimes and have constituted crimes against humanity.  Boko Haram also continued to recruit child soldiers,” Matazu said.

In the course of his presentation, he shared many instances where all these armed groups have violated constitutional laws.

He then urged people to always know and claim their rights. “A right shall always remain a right, your right is solely yours, claim it, without trampling upon the rights of others. Uplift the standard of humanity, by observing the principles of human rights and humanitarian laws for tranquillity and people environment to thrive” he concluded.

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