Human Rights and Democracy [in Nigeria]: Agenda for a New Era

Chidi Anselm Odinkalu

16 May 2019

58pages PDF

Democracy is a continuing festival of civic life. In reality, it is not meant to be an event but a process of renewing and improving both the processes of a dynamic society and of outcomes for its people. Those outcomes should include better protections for the human rights of a people. At any point in time, therefore, the sum of a country’s processes and outcomes should reflect the health of its civic and institutional wellbeing as well as coexistence. In effect, democracy and human rights are meaningless outside the context of communities and countries (nations). If anything, the state of Nigeria in 2019 advertises the extreme fragility of our communities and country. Underlying structural trends point to exceptional perils to national stability and coexistence. In these circumstances, a new era must acknowledge growing challenges to the sustainability of the notion of Nigeria. Without this acknowledgement, the ideas of democracy and, indeed, of Nigeria could both be in great peril.