Sunday, February 5, 2023

Nigeria, Mauritius retain UN rights committee seats

Nigeria and Mauritius have retained their seats to serve for another four years in the UN Committee on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights.

• April 19, 2022
United Nations
United Nations

Nigeria and Mauritius have retained their seats to serve for another four years in the UN Committee on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights (CESCR) from 2023 to 2026.

The candidates from the two countries were re-elected to occupy the two remaining vacant positions for Africa in CESCR.

CESCR is the body of 18 independent experts that monitors the implementation of the International Covenant on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights.

Egypt and Morocco were elected to occupy two seats of the four seats for the African group in 2021, and Egypt currently chairs the committee as a member of the group.

On Wednesday, the remaining two were contested at UN headquarters by Nigeria, Cameroon, Malawi, and Mauritius.

Nigeria won at the first ballot scoring 39 out of the 54 ballots of member states.

Malawi lost out. Mauritius and Cameroon competed for the remaining one seat because they were both even on votes.

Mauritius clinched the second seat knocking out Cameroon. So, Nigeria and Mauritius retained their two seats.

After the election, the Nigerian candidate who won the seat, Peters Emuze, said the committee was saddled with the responsibility to ensure that parties abide by treaties on economic, social and cultural rights.

“Nigeria is a state party to the covenant rights. Our duty is to ensure that State Parties adhere to the covenant rights by ensuring best practices. This is why periodically, state party reports are reviewed,” explained Mr Emuze. “However, a number of questions emanating from the provisions of articles of the covenant are advanced to state parties in the process of its review.”

However, the Nigerian diplomat thanked the permanent representative of Nigeria to the UN, Tijjani Muhammad-Bande, for the role he played in his re-election.

Mr Muhammad-Bande had, on March 31, hosted a reception, seeking the support of member states for Nigeria’s candidate for the seat.

Mr Emuze, a retired career diplomat for 35 years, rose to become a special grade director at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, where he served as head of the UN department.

He had served in Nigeria’s diplomatic missions in Zambia, the Netherlands, Italy, Hong Kong and the Permanent Mission of Nigeria to the UN in Geneva and Switzerland.

He was president of the UN Conference on Disarmament and is currently an independent expert of CESCR and a committee member drafting its General Comment on Sustainable Development and the International Covenant on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights. 


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