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OHCHR in Nigeria


The Senior Human Rights Adviser works with the UN Country Team (UNCT) to integrate human rights into their programmes and activities; undertakes human rights assessments; provides technical advice to national institutions; and conducts human rights capacity-building for a range of governmental and non-governmental actors.

Type of engagement Country Office
Year established 2014
Field offices Abuja
Number of staff 3
Annual budget needs US$ 349,000


  • Supported the establishment of a legal and institutional framework for human rights compliant counter-insurgency operations through assisting the Nigerian Army in establishing a Human Rights Desk, adopting a Human Rights Policy, and a Code of Conduct and Rules of Engagement for Operation Lafiya Dole. Designed and implemented targeted advocacy and training programmes for security agencies and relevant Government actors, to create awareness and enhance the protection and promotion of human rights.
  • Deployed human rights officers in the Northeast and Northcentral to provide human rights capacity to the humanitarian response.
  • The Government is currently preparing its Report for the third UPR cycle and is also working on the 2nd National Action Plan (NAP) for the Promotion and Protection of Human Rights. The Human Rights Adviser actively participates in all these activities and provides guidance and support to the Committees responsible for drafting the Report and NAP. The Human Rights Unit supported the preparation and submission of the first UNCT input to the UPR process.
  • Strengthened UNCT engagement with UN human rights mechanisms through facilitating visits by six mandate holders in four years, after a seven-year hiatus, and submitting the first UNCT report to a treaty body and the UPR process respectively.
  • Since early 2018, the Human Rights Advisory Unit undertook missions to Maiduguri, Makurdi, Yola, Enugu, Port Harcourt, Lagos and Jos, among others, pursuant to the implementation of its role in supporting capacity building in the area of human rights for national authorities and the UN system in Nigeria. More significantly, the Senior Human Rights Adviser has led three joint UNCT missions to Benue and Plateau States, one of which undertook the technical assessment for the deployment of UN intervention to alleviate the humanitarian situation in the Middle Belt. The Advisory has also supported UN advocacy on a systematic and appropriate response to the farmer-herder clashes, which constitutes the gravest security challenge to Nigeria, with fatalities now in excess of those related to Boko Haram.
  • The Human Rights Adviser participates actively in the Protection Sector Working Group and through deployments in Maiduguri and Yola, the Operational Protection Sector Working Group. The Adviser also assists the Nigerian Humanitarian Fund Coordination Group in providing technical advice on human rights in the humanitarian response to the Northeast and Benue State, with a focus on vulnerable groups such as women and girls, children and the disabled.

Partners and Donors

Partners and donors: UN Agencies, International and regional organizations, Federal & State Ministries of Justice directly and through various rights-based Committees, Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Ministry of Women Affairs & Social Development, National Human Rights Commission, Nigerian Bar Association (NBA), local Chapter of Federation of Female Lawyers (FIDA), Civil Society and Multi-Faith Organisations, Parliament particularly the Committees on Justice and Human Rights.

Donors: Peacebuilding Fund

UN Human Rights Focus Areas

Thematic pillars

  • Mechanisms: Increasing implementation of the international human rights mechanisms outcomes
  • Development: Integrating human rights in sustainable development
  • Accountability: Strengthening rule of law and accountability for human rights violations
  • Peace and Security: Early warning, prevention and protection of human rights in situations of conflict and insecurity


  • Prevention
  • Inequalities
  • Digital space and emerging technologies

Spotlight populations

  • Women
  • Young people
  • Persons with disabilities

Last reviewed: November 2020