Human rights and good governance are the salient elements of a well-functioning state and society. They are also mutually reinforced; for human rights principles provide a set of values to guide the work of government and other political and social actors. Good governance on the other hand is a key to sustainable development and without good governance human rights cannot be respected in a sustainable manner. The three concepts thus work hand in hand. However in countries like Nigeria where democracy and rule of law have not been fully nurtured the move towards implementing human rights and good governance principles into the daily functioning of state institutions can be a huge challenge. The probability that a nation will achieve the aims of sustainable development and participative democracy are all the greater if human rights are respected. The aim of this article is to ascertain the level of observance of respect of the human rights in Nigeria by the government authorities and other social actors and the impact such observance or otherwise has on governance and development in Nigeria. It is observed that though the Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, 1999 (as amended) makes an elaborate provision on human right, and that Nigeria has acceded to numerous international instruments on human rights, the problem of bad governance with the resultant inadequate development has a link with failure of the authorities that be, to adequately appreciate the requirements of human rights and apply them in governance. Furthermore a lot of the basic human rights as contained in Chapter II of the Nigerian Constitution are not enforceable, thus failure of the authorities to observe them cannot be questioned. It is advocated.
The struggle for cultural supremacy is not only a fact of history but also an observable phenomenon of social existence. Perhaps, the frenzied defence of cultural identity is second only to the expression of territorial nationalism. Contemporary cultures of which Islam is a resilient part are engaged in a ceaseless war of survival. Following the 9/11 attack on the World Trade Centre in New York, Islam has come under intense scrutiny. What has followed is a feverish commitment to the obliteration of Islamic values at home and abroad and the intensification of the scheme to enthrone western culture. This raises many legal, constitutional and sociological questions as well as questions relating to the place of Islamic culture both on the international arena and within the Nigerian jurisdiction. The paper is dedicated both to defining the place of Islamic culture vis-a-vis freedom of conscience and the constitutional safeguards in place against the prejudices that confront Islamic civilisation.