Environment, Niger Delta And Development

The thematic area on Environment, Niger Delta and Development is covered by a three man team, whose members are 

  • Yemisi Akhile
  • Tina Oduneye
  • Uzoamaka Ifechi-Fred,

The thematic team is headed by Yemisi Akhile

The right to favourable environment is protected by natural, regional and international human rights instruments. The thematic area focuses on protecting human rights, to advocating for a safe, clean, healthy and sustainable environment, and also recognises that this is integral to the full enjoyment of a wide range of human rights, including the rights to life, health, food, water and sanitation. 

Without a healthy environment, people are unable to fulfil their aspirations or even live at a level commensurate with minimum standards of human dignity.  At the same time, protecting human rights helps to protect the environment.  When people are able to learn about, and participate in, the decisions that affect them, they can help to ensure that those decisions respect their need for a sustainable environment. 

In recent years, the recognition of the links between human rights and the environment has greatly increased.  The number and scope of international and domestic laws, judicial decisions, and academic studies on the relationship between human rights, environment and development have grown rapidly.

All over the world, people experience the negative effects of environmental degradation ecosystems decline, including water shortage, fisheries depletion, natural disasters due to deforestation and unsafe management and disposal of toxic and dangerous wastes and products. Indigenous peoples suffer directly from the degradation of the ecosystems that they rely upon for their livelihoods. Climate change is exacerbating many of these negative effects of environmental degradation on human health and well-being and is also causing new ones, including an increase in extreme weather events and an increase in spread of malaria and other vector born diseases. These facts clearly show the close linkages between the environment and the enjoyment of human rights, and justify an integrated approach to environment, development and human rights. 

The thematic area specified the Niger Delta area of Nigeria being that a lot of human rights violation have occurred in the area as a result of environmental abuse through oil exploration, spillage, gas flaring and a list of others.

The thematic team is charged with the responsibility of education and advocacy on human rights promotion and protection as it relates to environment, Niger-Delta   and Development. In addition, the thematic team has the responsibility of identifying NGOs and international partners that the Commission can partner/ collaborate with in providing training and sensitisation under the thematic team.