At its recently concluded 66th Ordinary Session, the African Commission on Human and Peoples Rights has appointed the Deputy Vice Chancellor of Afe Babalola University, Ado Ekiti (ABUAD), Professor Damilola S. Olawuyi, as an expert member of the Commission’s Working Group on Extractive Industries, Environment and Human Rights Violations.

Established in 2009 through ACHPR Resolution 148, the Working Group comprises foremost thought leaders and policy experts in natural resources law in Africa, with the mandate to examine the impact of extractive industries in Africa within the context of the African Charter on Human and Peoples’ Rights. For over eleven years, the Working Group has played an active role in informing the African Commission on the possible liability of non-state actors for human and peoples’ rights violations in the extractive industries, especially oil and gas, and solid minerals development. Amongst other functions, the Working Group formulates recommendations and proposals to African Governments on the appropriate measures and activities for the prevention and reparation of violations of human and peoples’ rights by extractive industries in Africa.

The appointment letter signed by the Chairperson of the African Commission on Human and Peoples Rights, Hon. Solomon Ayele Dersso, says “The Commission, during its 66th Ordinary session, held virtually from 13 July to 08 August 2020, selected and appointed you as a member of the Working Group. I would like to congratulate you on your appointment and welcome you to the Working Group. The Working Group looks forward to working with you and benefitting from your expertise in the field of extractive industries, environment and human rights in Africa.”

A prolific and highly regarded scholar with expertise in petroleum, mining, energy, environment, and agricultural law, Professor Olawuyi has published over hundred articles, book chapters and books on all aspects of sustainable development in African extractive industries. He has served as a consultant to the United Nations, World Bank, and the UK’s Department for International Department amongst others. He is global Vice Chair of the International Law Association (ILA), Vice President of the Nigerian Branch of the ILA and member of the International Bar Association’s academic advisory group on energy, environment and natural resources. Professor Olawuyi has delivered lectures on energy law in over 40 countries in Europe, North America, Asia, Africa and the Middle East. In 2019, he received the Herbert Smith Freehills Visiting Professorship at the University of Cambridge, United Kingdom.

Speaking on his appointment, Professor Olawuyi said “It is an absolute privilege and honor to have been appointed by the African Commission to serve on this important Working Group. If properly developed, extractive industries have enormous potential to unlock economic prosperity and sustainable growth across the continent. I look forward to contributing my best to making this happen. I thank Hon. Commissioner Dersso and members of the African Commission for their confidence in me. I very much look forward to working with them to advance the Commission’s important work of deepening a culture of human rights in natural resource development across the continent.”

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