Global Rights has through its Annual National Business and Human Rights Roundtable passed a strong message to the actors in both Private sector and Civil Society space to synergise so as to create a safe place for Businesses and Human Rights amidst the spate of insecurity in the land.
The Country Director, Global Rights, Abiodun Baiyewu while giving opening remarks at the Roundtable on Wednesday in Abuja said there is need for the civic space to keep expanding rather than shrinking experience that the country has witnessed over the years.
In her words: What we have witnessed in the country in the last few months truly call for concern particularly as its regards to how the insecurity has continued to negatively affect businesses in some regions in Nigeria.
“The shrinking civic space and the endemic insecurity negatively impacts the peace and stability of the country, and is in turn, inimical to businesses that hope to thrive in them” said Baiyewu
“The role of Civil Society Organizations and Human Rights Defenders in calling the government to be accountable for the recent spike in insecurity within the country cannot be underplayed”
“This role has been a driving force in the observance and respect of human rights across the country. The civic space is characterized by fundamental elements that are critical to the realization of human rights, as well as a profitable and sustainable business environment.
While speaking on impact of the annual National Roundtable on Business and Human Rights, she said that roundtable was initiated to carry out activities that would create an awareness of the nexus between business and human rights in Nigeria and to promote sustainability standards for Nigeria’s extractive industry among others.
Amara Nwakpa, who is the Executive Director, Shehu Musa Yar’adua Foundation was amongst the speakers at the roundtable spoke extensively on how the effective collaboration between Private Sector and Civil Society Organization could bring about a change within the civic space.
Citing the recent unprecedented impact made during #EndSARS as a typical example of what both Private sector and Civil Society Organization could achieve if there is true synergy.
“The only actors that could work together in changing the narrative by creating a safe place for businesses and human rights in Nigeria are Private Sector and Civil Society Organisations”
“They can start to do that by holding government accountable for spate of insecurity in the country’ he said.