On the 16th November, 2013 Lawyer Alert trained 22 monitors to document reported cases of violation of economic rights of the Mbayion community by the Dangote Cement PLC. This is under our natural resource extraction/human rights project within the cement producing community of Mbayion, Benue State, Nigeria.
Recall in our past postings we reported that, Allhaji Aliko Dangote Africa’s richest man makes part of his fortune extracting cement from this community under his company, Dangote Cement PLC. There has always been reported cases of gross violation human rights and utter lack of care of the well being of this community by Dangote Cement in its production alongside lack of adherence with international standards. Lawyers Alert is technically supporting this community to scientifically capture these violations if they do actually exist.
This project is broken into three phases. Phase one, involves educating this community to understand and appreciate what human rights especially ESCR are. During this phase, Lawyers Alert had series of training, town hall meetings, field visits with the community over a period. The output is that, the community is now empowered to appreciate and understand what human rights are, to recognize violations when they occur and view it through human rights lenses. Almost every house hold in Mbayion community benefited from this phase.
The second phase of the project which is where we are now, is to train community representatives (22 of them) to document violation when reported to them by community members. Lawyers Alert has developed a tool to assist the monitors capture the violations that has been reported to them. This tool seeks to clarify the nature of violation, its extent, the location, the time and means of verification. The 22 monitors were trained to be at home with this tool. It is imperative to work with these monitors as they are the arrow heads within the community, this is especially so as not all members of the community can read and write. Gabin Benedict Asan and Mr. Rommy Mom conducted this arm of training.
Post this training the monitors will over a period of months document reported violations and submit to Lawyers Alert for analysis. This will lead to the third phase which will be publication and actions towards reliefs if the need arises