Committee on the Rights of the Child: Nigeria

Session 054 (2010)

(21 June 2010, CRC/C/NGA/CO/3-4, Concluding observations on third/fourth report, paras. 5, 6, 40 and 41)

"The Committee welcomes efforts undertaken by the State party to address the concerns and recommendations adopted upon consideration of the second periodic report of the State party in 2005 (see CRC/C/15/Add.257). However, the Committee remains concerned that certain recommendations have not been given sufficient follow-up. 

"The Committee urges the State party to take all measures to address those recommendations contained in the concluding observations on the second periodic report that have not yet been implemented and to provide adequate follow-up to the recommendations regarding, inter alia, ... corporal punishment ... contained in the present concluding observations on its combined third and fourth periodic report.  

"The Committee remains concerned that little or no action has been taken, or is planned for, by the State party to follow-up on its earlier recommendations concerning the outlawing of corporal punishment, especially by amending the relevant provisions of the Criminal Code and the Children and Young Persons Act which are inconsistent with the State party’s obligations under the Child Rights Act and the Convention. 

"The Committee urges the State party to ensure the prohibition of corporal punishment in all settings, including in the home and under sharia law, as recommended by the Committee in its earlier recommendations (CRC/C/15/Add.257, para. 38). The Committee further strongly recommends that the State party conduct awareness-raising campaigns to ensure that alternative forms of discipline are used, in a manner consistent with the human dignity of the child, drawing the State party’s attention to general comment No. 8 (2006) on the right of the child to protection from corporal punishment and other cruel or degrading forms of punishment, and that it seek assistance from traditional and religious leaders in this respect."

Read more from Session 054 (2010)

Session 038 (2005)

(13 April 2005, CRC/C/15/Add.257, Concluding observations on second report, paras. 38, 39, 79, 80 and 81)

"The Committee takes note that article 221 of the Child Rights Act prohibits corporal punishment in judicial settings, and that a ministerial note has been sent to schools notifying them of the prohibition of corporal punishment in schools. Nevertheless, in light of article 19 of the Convention, the Committee remains concerned that corporal punishment is still widely practised in the penal system as a sanction, as well as in the family, in schools and in other institutions. In particular, the Committee is concerned about:

a) articles 9 and 11 (2) of the Children and Young Persons Law which provides for the sentencing of juvenile offenders to whipping and corporal punishment;

b) article 18 of the Criminal Code which provides for whipping;

c) article 55 of the Penal Code which provides for the use of physical corrective measures;

d) Shari’ahlegal code to children prescribing penalties and corporal punishment such as flogging, whipping, stoning and amputation, which are sometimes applied to children; and

e) legal provisions that tolerate, if not promote, corporal punishment at home, in particular article 55 (1)(a) of the Penal Code and article 295 of the Criminal Code.

"The Committee recommends that the State party:

a) abolish or amend all legislation prescribing corporal punishment as a penal sentence, in particular the Children and Young Persons Act;

b) expressly prohibit corporal punishment by law in all settings, in particular in the family, schools and other institutions; and

c) conduct awareness-raising campaigns to ensure that positive, participatory, non-violent forms of discipline are administrated in a manner consistent with the child’s human dignity and in conformity with the Convention, especially article 28 (2) as an alternative to corporal punishment at all levels of society.

"Despite the State party’s claim that there are no discrepancies between the provisions of the Convention and the Shari’ahlaws with regard to the rights of children, the Committee remains deeply concerned by the sentencing of persons below 18 years to cruel, inhuman and degrading treatment such as stoning, flogging, whipping and amputation by Shari’ah courts. The Committee is further concerned that under section 95 of the Shari’ah Penal Code, persons aged 7-18 years can be subjected to the punishment of confinement in a reform institution, or 20 strokes of cane, or with fine, or both.

"The Committee recommends the State party to review its legislation, policies and budgets to ensure the full implementation of juvenile justice standards, in particular article 37 (b) and article 40, paragraph 2 (b) (ii)-(iv) and (vii) of the Convention... 

"In this respect, the Committee urges the State party to, in particular: ...

e) amend, as a matter of urgency, the Child and Young Persons Act and the Criminal Code, as well as the Shari’ah Penal Codes to abolish death penalty as well as cruel, inhuman and degrading treatment on juvenile offenders, and in the meantime take measures, as a matter of priority, to ensure that persons under 18 are not sentenced to torture, cruel, inhuman and degrading forms of sanction such as flogging and amputation by Shari’ah courts; ...

h) enact an amendment to the Children and Young Persons Act, prohibiting all forms of corporal punishment in penal institutions…."

Read more from Session 038 (2005)

Session 013 (1996)

(30 October 1996, CRC/C/15/Add.61, Concluding observations on initial report, paras. 15, 36 and 38)

"… The problem of violence against children and the physical abuse of children in the family, in schools, in the community and in society are also of major concern to the Committee.

"The Committee shares the view of the State party that major efforts are required to address harmful practices such as early marriage, betrothals of children, female genital mutilation and abuse of children in the family. The Committee recommends that all legislation should be reviewed to ensure its compatibility with the eradication of such violations of children’s rights and that campaigns be developed and pursued with the involvement of all sectors of society with a view to changing attitudes in the country as to the non-acceptance of harmful practices….

"… Measures must also be taken to ensure that discipline in school is administered in conformity with the provisions of article 28, paragraph 2 of the Convention…."

Read more from Session 013 (1996)
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