BY CHIMA AKWAJA, Lagos
Former finance minister and World Trade Organisation’s (WTO) director-general hopeful, Ngozi-Okonjo Iweala, Access Bank, co-founder of the Bring Back Our Girls Movement, Aisha Yesufu and others have made the final list for the second Community and Human Rights (CAHR) Awards.
The award, which will hold during the Sustainability in the Extractive Industries (SITEI) conference on Tuesday and Wednesday, is organised by CSR-in-Action, the foremost sustainability advocacy and consulting firm in the region.
The CAHR awards celebrate community and human rights heroes, both organisations and individuals. There are now three finalist nominees following an open round of voting under each of the nine different award categories dedicated to historically prominent personalities.
Okonjo-Iweala was nominated by Nigerians for the Aminu Kano Award for Leadership, alongside #EndSARS protest mobiliser and member of Lagos Judicial panel on police brutality, Rinu Oduala.
Aisha Yesufu, another prominent figure in the #EndSARS movement and co-founder of the Bring Back Our Girls Movement was nominated for the Funmilayo Ransome-Kuti Human Rights Award.
Access bank is among the corporate organisations on the list, with a nomination for the Hajiya Gambo Sawaba Community Impact Award.
She Leads Africa (SHA) and Women in Mining in Nigeria (WIMIN) are two of the top contenders for the Josephine Nkemdilim Equal Rights Award, while Amnesty International, Women of Inestimable Values Foundation, and Socio-Economic Rights and Accountability Project (SERAP) are contending for the Funmilayo Ransome Kuti Human Rights Award for organisations.
Remarking on the selection process for the second CAHR awards, one of the jurors, renowned rapper and community activist, Michael Ugochukwu Stephens known as Ruggedman said, “Nigerians want to identify and celebrate people with the uncommon courage to seek for peace and justice even when it is difficult; people who fight for the right of the common man and champion the cause of the masses. These are the people we are celebrating at the CAHR Awards.”
The jury for the prestigious awards also includes community organiser and women rights activist, Emem Okon; radio personality and musicologist of Classic FM, Sola Mogaji; renowned communications expert, Tokunboh George-Taylor; talk show host and media consultant, Ireti Bakare-Yusuf; chairman/council member, Mining Solid Minerals Group, Lagos Chamber of Commerce and Industry, Otunba Engr. Babatunde Alatise and community development specialist, Dr. Mina Ogbanga.
Previous winners of the CAHR awards include Yemisi Ransome-Kuti, Agip Oil Company limited, Aigboje Aig-Imoukhuede and Segun Awosanya, known as Segalink and among others.
“CAHR awards provide an opportunity to encourage Nigerians in making efforts towards advancing progressive dialogues in communities and fostering justice and inclusion in the society,” chairman of the Organising Committee, Meka Olowola, said.
SITEI and CAHR awards, the brainchildren of CSR-in-Action’s visionary founder, Bekeme Masade-Olowola, a seasoned sustainability personality, who is on international boards, including the Global reporting initiative and the Nigerian network of the World Business Council for Sustainable Development, aim to encourage social justice and equity particularly within rural communities.
Ford foundation has been critical to enabling the hosting of the SITEI conference over the year while Global Rights is a co-sponsor.
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