UNODC: Nigeria, EU, UNODC, CTED partnership strengthens justice, peace


By Kennedy Nnamani

THE Nigerian Government has partnered with the European Union, EU, United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime, UNODC, and the Counter-Terrorism Executive Directorate, CTED, to tighten justice responses to terrorism and violent extremism in the country.

This was disclosed yesterday in Abuja through a statement by the UNODC to mark the 2022 Europe Day.

According to the statement, the EU-Nigeria partnership, which is most visibly in the area of peace, governance and security is implementing the EU, Nigeria, UNODC and CTED partnership project on “Strengthening Rule of Law Based Criminal Justice Responses to Terrorism and Violent Extremism.”

It added that the 8,100,000 euro projects, which will run until 30 September 2022 are focusing on “providing policy and legislative advice, as well as related capacity-building support, on a wide range of topics, including investigative interviewing, effective prosecution and case management, confronting sexual and gender-based violence, and ensuring human rights compliance”, especially in Northeast Nigeria.

The UNODC mentioned in the statement that through the project, 197 capacity building activities had been delivered, while training 4,452 investigators, intelligence analysts, prosecutors, defense lawyers and judges from a total of 102 Nigerian institutions.

It also noted that it has provided legal advisory services to Nigerian Lawmakers on the drafting of new counter-terrorism legislation currently awaiting presidential assent, support to the Joint Investigation Centre for the Nigeria Police Force, and the Department of State Security Service as well as the Legal Aid Council of Nigeria, LACON.

“We have also worked with the European Union to support the regular deployment of federal counter-terrorism prosecutors from the Complex Case Group of the Ministry of Justice to the Joint Investigation Centre in Northeast Nigeria to guide investigations and review case files,” the statement said.

According to the UNODC, the resources for training of trainers which the partnership has developed include:

The “Nigeria Training Module on Investigative Interviewing, the Right to Remain Silent and the Prohibition of Torture”, which serves as a reference tool for Nigerian criminal justice officials.

The “Nigeria Training Module on Gender Dimensions of Criminal Justice Responses to Terrorism”, which is a practical tool for training criminal justice sector practitioners working on terrorism-related cases on the gender aspects of counter-terrorism.

The “User’s Guide to the Terrorism (Prevention Act, 2011 (TPA) as amended by the Terrorism (Prevention) (Amendment) Act, 2013 (TPAA)”, which serves as a reference guide for prosecutors, investigators, the Courts and all those involved in the criminal justice system on the application of the TPA, as amended.

The “Nigeria Handbook on Counter-Terrorism Investigations”, was designed to help Nigerian investigators.