By Lizzy Okoji
British High Commissioner to Nigeria, Catriona Laing, has called on African Envoys to support the nomination of Nigerian-British Dapo Akande to the International Law Commission (ILC).
Laing made the call on Thursday in Abuja in a reception organised to host Akande, African envoys and other partners.
ILC is a body of experts responsible for helping develop and codify international law.
It is composed of 34 individuals recognised for their expertise and qualifications in international law, who are elected by the UN General Assembly every five years.
The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that Akande was jointly nominated by the Nigerian and British Government into the ILC, with joint nomination from Kenya, Japan and Slovenia.
Laing, who lauded Akande’s nomination said, he was a learned professional with a wealth of experience that he has to offer.
“It is my honour and privilege to host Prof. Dapo Akande in Abuja today.
“He is an outstanding scholar and lawyer and it is wonderful that the UK and Nigeria are jointly nominating him for the position on the International Law Commission.
“This further demonstrates the strength of our partnership and our people-people ties.
“He is our candidate to serve for the very important organisation which you may not have heard of, but actually affects all of us at the International Law Commission.
“It is part of the UN and it is the body that helps to determine International Laws which guide most of the International Issues like International Humanitarian law, law of wars, laws of the sea, issues such as that.
“And, when we were looking for our candidate, we were looking for the very best and I, as the High Commissioner of Nigeria, is delighted that we came on Prof Akande.
“Because it enabled us to co-sponsor him as Britain and Nigerian, and not just Britain and Nigeria but from Japan, Kenya and Slovenia.
“This evening hosting dinner for the Ambassadors and High Commissioners in Africa to support him at this very important institution,” Laing said.
In his response, Akande appreciated the Nigerian and British government for their support and nomination.
Akande said that if elected into the ILC, he would ensure that the Commission addressed challenges on contemporary problems of International Relations and how the rules of International Law would be adapted, amongst other challenges.
“If I were elected to the International Law Commission, I think that the combination of my academic background, together with having a sense of how International Law applies in practice will make me function well.
“The main thing I will like to see is that the work of the Commission is focused on contemporary problems of International Relations and how the rules of International law will be adapted.
“To shape the challenges that we face as a global community today like issues relating to the application of international Law on conflict, questions on the application of rights law.
“And it is my hope that the International Law Commission will be able to take on these issues,” Akande said. (NAN)