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Tom Lantos Human Rights Commission Briefing

Nigeria: Elections and Human Rights

Thursday, December 6, 2018
2:30 – 3:30 p.m.
2255 Rayburn House Office Building


Please join the Tom Lantos Human Rights Commission (TLHRC) for a briefing on human rights and the upcoming elections in Nigeria.

On February 16, 2019, Nigeria will hold its first national elections since the nation’s peaceful transfer of political power in 2015. While pre-election assessments suggest positive developments by electoral stakeholders, many Nigerians expect a close presidential
race and possible efforts to manipulate the process. Some fear that a combination of factors could fuel electoral violence.

Nigeria continues to face significant human rights challenges across the country. Though its death toll is down from a peak in 2015, Boko Haram continues to perpetrate human rights violations through suicide bombings, kidnappings and other terrorist-related
activities. In Nigeria’s Middle Belt region, the farmer-herder conflict has become the country’s deadliest with an estimated 1,300 people killed in the first six months of 2018. Communal violence and retaliatory attacks by herdsman and farmer groups against
one another over limited resources incorporate religious and ethnic dynamics that have further polarized the country. It is estimated that over 1.9 million Nigerians remain internally displaced because of these conflicts. Security force abuses and harassment
of journalists are among other issues of potential concern as elections approach. 

Panelists will discuss these human rights challenges within the context of the upcoming elections and address how Congress and the international community can best support the Nigerian people.


  • John Tomaszewski, Regional Director for Africa, International Republican Institute
  • Oge Onubogu, Senior Program Officer for Africa Programs, U.S. Institute of Peace
  • Kristina Arriaga, Vice Chair, U.S. Commission on International Religious Freedom


  • Jamie Staley, Senior Professional Staff, Tom Lantos Human Rights Commission

This briefing is open to Members of Congress, congressional staff, the interested public, and the media. For any questions, please contact Jamie Staley (for Mr. Hultgren) at (202-226-1516) or or Kimberly Stanton (for Mr. McGovern) at 202-225-3599 or




Randy Hultgren, M.C.                                    James P. McGovern, M.C.
Co-Chair, TLHRC                                          Co-Chair, TLHRC


Related Legislative Issues

Selected legislative information: Civil Rights, Foreign Affairs

Related Event Information

Event Location: 2255 Rayburn House Office Building
Event Start: 12/6/2018 2:30:00 PM
Event End: 12/6/2018 3:30:00 PM

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