The National Human Rights Commission (NHRC) in collaboration with the National Orientation Agency (NOA) is to translate parts of the 1999 Constitution into the three major local languages.
The Executive Secretary of the commission, Prof. Bem Angwe, and the Director-General of NOA, Dr Mike Omeri, announced the plan in Abuja on Wednesday at the opening of an exhibition.
They said that the area to be translated was the chapter on fundamental human rights.
Angwe also said that the commission would soon sensitise Nigerians on the Universal Declaration of Human Rights in local languages.
The executive secretary added that the exhibition, organised by the commission and the Mexican embassy in Abuja, was part of the activities to mark its 20th anniversary.
He advised Nigerians to study the declaration, saying it was the international community’s way of declaring the universality of all human beings.
Omeri, on his part, expressed the commitment of the NOA to work with the commission to ensure that Nigerians heard about human rights activities in their local languages.
“What we are having here is a partnership that will utilise the strength of NOA because we are everywhere in the local governments and we use more than 500 dialects to communicate with the people
“Making people aware of their rights by partnering with the NHRC at this time will enable us to equip the citizens to key into the processes of change and development,’’ Omeri said.
The Mexican Ambassador to Nigeria, Mr Anthonio Blanco, said that the exhibition was the embassy’s way of helping to promote the knowledge and understanding of human rights in Nigeria.
Blanco added that part of the embassy’s contribution was the translation of the 31 articles of the declaration into the three major languages as well as 10 Mexican languages.
The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that the translation of the articles into the three major languages is a follow up to recommendations made by the stakeholders at the launch of human rights awareness survey in the country.
The stakeholders had recommended that issues of human rights be translated into local languages for easier understanding.
The exhibition is entitled: “Our Rights in Our Words: The Universal Declaration of Human Rights in Local Languages