Most of the steps taken by countries to stop the spread of COVID-19 pandemic have important consequences for human rights, says Inter-Parliamentary Union (IPU).
In the wake of the pandemic, many countries took sweeping steps – even declared states of emergency – to stop the spread of the virus and protect their populations.
But, how can basic human rights standards guide country efforts to respond to the health crisis?
How can parliaments exercise their legislative and oversight functions to ensure that government actions are compatible with their human rights obligations?
What is the balance between upholding the right to health and mitigating the undesirable effects of confinement measures on social and economic rights?
These are what a new IPU guidance is seeking to address.
The guidance is designed for parliaments as a resource to help them manage the COVID-19 crisis. It contains recommendations and examples from other parliaments on Permissible restrictions to human rights, states of emergency and respect for human rights as well as ensuring a human rights dimension in the public health response.
Meanwhile, in Nigeria, positive cases of COVID-19 is currently 4,151 as of Saturday.
The Nigeria Centre for Disease Control (NCDC) announced 239 new positive tests and 11 new deaths which brings the country’s total to 128.
Of the 239 new cases, Lagos recorded 97, Bauchi 44, Kano 29, Katsina 19, Borno 17, Abuja seven, Kwara six, Oyo five, Kaduna three, Sokoto three, Adamawa, Kebbi, Plateau, Ogun two each, and Ekiti one.
So far, a total of 745 patients who were infected have been successfully treated and discharged.