The National Human Rights Commission (NHRC) has inaugurated Transitional Justice Panels and Community Reconciliation Committees to facilitate transitional justice and reconciliation in North East.
In his speech at the occassion, the Executive Secretary of NHRC, Chief Tony Ojukwu, said the transitional justice project was being implemented in partnership with United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) and European Union (EU).
Ojukwu said the project was aimed at creating long-lasting reconciliation and a deep sense of justice among communities affected by Boko-Haram conflict.
Ojukwu said the Transitional Justice Panels’ terms of reference included establishing a complaints registry, adjudication of cases using community and right-base approaches.
It will also determine appropriate levels of compensation and remedies for victims as well as determine non-judicial and non-custodial sanctioning.
Community Reconciliation Committees terms of reference includes providing a conducive environment for victims to confront their alleged perpetrators or violators, to provide opportunity for truth telling and communication between victims and perpetrators.
According to Ojukwu, members of the committees and panels were selected by their communities.
“Your mandates provide your communities with the opportunities to reconcile, rebuild and position themselves for a more prosperous future founded on justice, equity and peace.
“Your tasks will be challenging but we believe that you have what it takes to succeed.
“Membership of the panel and committees have been carefully chosen and vetted by the communities themselves and we believe that these special attributes will further boost your moral and credibility, ” Ojukwu said.
The Secretary of Bama Emirate, Alhaji Makinta Usman who spoke on behalf of traditional rulers, lauded the initiative by UNHCR and assured thier support to transitional justice and reconciliation.
Usman, who noted that Bama was one of the areas worst hit by the insurgency, said with the return of normalcy, they had started recieving repentant Boko-Haram members and would use the transitional justice and reconciliation project to achieve lasting peace in the area.
Highlights of the occassion include technical sessions on “Regional and Global Mechanisms for Setting up Transitional Justice Mechanisms”, “United Nations Approaches to Transitional Justice”, “Framework for Transitional Justice at Community level”, “Framework for CommunityLed Reconciliation”, and “Framework for Gender inclusion in Community-Led Reconciliation”.