Lagos, Nigeria - The International Commission of Jurists (ICJ) has written to Nigeria's President Goodluck Jonathan to ensure enforcement of the ruling by the ECOWAS Court of Justice in a case related to oil pollution in the Niger Delta.
In the case, brought by Nigerian NGO Socio-economic Right and Accountability Project (SERAP), the ECOWAS Court ruled that Nigeria had violated its obligations under the Article 24 of the African Charter on Human Rights and People’s Rights, which provides: “All peoples shall have the right to a general satisfactory environment favourable to their development”.
The case concerns activities by oil companies operating in the Niger Delta, whose operations were identified as the cause of severe pollution of water, land and the general environment where people of the Niger Delta live.
The Court ordered the Nigerian government to take all effective measures, within the shortest possible time, to ensure restoration of the environment of the Niger Delta; Take all measures that are necessary to prevent the occurrence of damage to the environment; And take all measures to hold the perpetrators of the environmental damage accountable.
'The Federal Republic of Nigeria has an international obligation to comply with and enforce this Decision of the Community Court of Justice, ECOWAS, in accordance with Article 15 of the Revised Treaty and Article 24 of the 2005 Supplementary Protocol on the Court,' ICJ Secretary-General Wilder Tayler said in the letter, a copy of which was made available to PANA by SERAP in Lagos, Nigeria, Tuesday.
'I would therefore respectfully request your Government to take all necessary steps and issue instructions to relevant officials to comply with this ruling without delay,' the ICJ Scribe wrote.