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THE RIGHTS OF VICTIMS OF CORE INTERNATIONAL CRIMES TO REPARATION IN NIGERIA
Summary: Generally, the rights to reparation of victims of crime is largely controverted, especially in common law jurisdictions such as Nigeria where there is no express provision conferring or denying such right. With the rising number of victims of core international crimes in Nigeria, there is an increasing need to evaluate Nigeria’s disposition to the plight of victims of core international crimes within its jurisdiction in light of the provisions of the Rome Statute. The article evaluates the possibility of the recognition of the right of victims of core international crimes to reparation in Nigeria. Although there are fragmentary provisions in the existing legislation that may be explored to ground the rights to reparations of victims of domestic crimes generally, the flaws and inadequacy of those laws are apparent in the face of the gravity and demands of core international crimes. The article argues that Nigeria owes an obligation to repair the harms suffered by victims of core international crimes in line with the provisions of article 75 of the Rome Statute which unequivocally confers such rights on victims, and the principle of ubi jus ibi remedium. The article concludes by making concise recommendations with respect to legal provisions on victims’ rights to reparation in Nigeria in the context of international criminal law.
Key words: victims; reparation; criminal justice; rights; International