Republic of Niger
Republique du Niger
Joined United Nations: 20 September 1960
Human Rights as assured by their constitution
Updated 07 April 2013
TITLE II: RIGHTS AND DUTIES OF THE INDIVIDUAL
Each human being is sacred. The state shall have an absolute obligation to respect and to protect the individual. The full nurturing of each
individual shall be guaranteed.
Each person shall have the right to life, health, security, physical well-being, education, and instruction according to conditions established
No person shall be subjected to torture, slavery, cruelty or to cruel, inhuman or degrading treatment.
No person shall be required to carry out an obviously illegal order. The law shall determine what constitutes an obviously illegal order.
Each individual and each agent of the state who is found guilty of acts of torture, cruelty, or cruel, inhuman or degrading treatment in the
exercise of or in any way related to the exercise of his or her duties, whether under his or her own initiative or under instructions, shall be
punished according to the law.
Each person shall have the right to full economic, intellectual, spiritual, cultural and religious development, as long as such development
does not violate the rights of others or infringe on the constitutional or legal order or on good morality.
No one shall be arrested or incarcerated except under a law adopted previously in relation to the facts with which he or she is charged.
No citizen shall be confined in exile or deported. Confinement in exile or deportation of any citizen shall be considered a crime against the
nation and punishable by law.
No law or regulation shall be retroactive except where it concerns rights and benefits that can be conferred on the citizen.
Any persons accused of a felonious act shall be presumed innocent until his or her guilt is established legally, through a public process
during which all necessary guarantees for his or her defence shall be assured. No person shall be condemned for the commission or
omission of any act which, at the time when it was committed, did not constitute an infraction under national law. Likewise, no person
shall be inflicted with any penalty stronger than that applicable at the time the infraction was committed.
Marriage and the family shall constitute the natural and moral basis of the human community. Both shall be under the protection of the
state. The state and public entities shall have the power to oversee the physical, mental and moral well-being of the family, particularly
mothers and infants.
Parents shall have the right and the duty to raise and educate their children. They shall be supported in this duty by the state and by public
entities. Minors shall be protected by the state and public entities against exploitation and abandonment. The state shall safeguard aged
persons. The state shall safeguard the equal opportunity of handicapped persons as far as their advancement and/or social reintegration is
concerned. Moreover, the state shall safeguard the material and intellectual development of the youth. It shall safeguard the well-being of
Every person's home shall be inviolable. Searches of residences, arrest or questioning can only be ordered under forms and conditions
specified by law.
Each person shall have the right to own property. No person shall be deprived of his or her property except when needed for public use,
and then only when compensated fairly in advance.
Secrecy of correspondence and communication shall be guaranteed under conditions defined by law.
Each person shall have the right to freedom of thought, opinion, expression, conscience, religion, and worship. The state shall guarantee
the free exercise of worship and expression of beliefs. These rights shall be applicable in regard to public order, social tranquillity, and
The state shall recognise and guarantee freedom of movement, and freedoms of association, of assembly, of procession, and of
demonstration, under conditions specified by law.
The state shall recognise the right of all citizens to work and to strive to create conditions which promote the enjoyment of this right and
which guarantee to each worker fair compensation for his goods or services.
The state shall recognise and guarantee the right of labour to organise and to strike, according to conditions provided for by laws and
Each person shall have the right to a healthy environment. The state shall be charged with protecting the environment. Everyone shall be
required to contribute to the protection and improvement of the environment in which he or she lives. The stockpiling, moving and
evacuation of toxic wastes, whether pollutants from factories or from other industrial or crafts organisations situated on national property,
shall be regulated by law. The transit, importation, stockpiling, burial, dumping of toxic wastes or foreign pollutants on national property,
as well as any agreement relative thereto, shall constitute a crime against the nation, punishable by law.
The defence of the nation and of the integrity of the territory of the Republic shall be a sacred duty of all citizens of Niger. Military service
is obligatory. Conditions for fulfilling this duty shall be determined by law.
Each citizen of Niger, whether civilian or in the military, shall have the sacred duty to respect the Constitution and the legal order of the
Republic under all circumstances.
Each citizen shall have the duty to work for the common good, to fulfil civic and professional obligations, and to fulfil responsibilities
involving fiscal contributions to the state.
Public assets shall be considered sacred and inviolable. Each person shall respect and protect them scrupulously. Any act of sabotage,
vandalism, corruption, misappropriation, waste or illegal enrichment shall be restrained by law.
The state shall protect the rights and legitimate interests of citizens of Niger beyond its borders.
The state shall have the duty to ensure the translation into national languages, the spreading and teaching of the Constitution, as well as
individual rights and fundamental liberties. A National Commission shall watch over the promotion and the effectiveness of the rights and
liberties proclaimed above, and if need be, in accordance with international agreements signed by Niger. A law shall determine the
organisation and functioning of the Commission.
Human Humans have inhabited the region of Niger for upwards of 3.5 million years. Prior to
desertification Niger's north experienced waves of pastoralists and herders starting around
7,000 BCE, shifting southward around 2000 BCE. Carthage and Egypt established trade
around 500 BCE between the Empires of the Sahel and Empires of the Mediterranean.
Songhai, Mali, the Dendi Kingdom, Gao, and Kanem-Bornu, as well as a number of Hausa
states, claimed control over portions of the area along with Hausa and Tuareg Federations in
conflict with the 18th Century Fulani Empire of Sokoto. British and German explorers
penetrated the region in the 19th Century however French attempts to pacify the region
through the latter 19th Century culminated with colonization in 1922 in line with the policies
of the rest of French West Africa. Self-government was permitted by 1957, autonomy by 1058
and, finally independence which was declared with the promulgation of the first constitution
on 3 August 1960. A series of coups and uprisings have led to the rewriting of the
constitution four times. The present Constitution of the Fifth Republic was adopted on 18
July 1999 though has been suspended since the 19 February 2010 coup. Human rights are
enumerated beginning with Title II (Rights and Duties of the Individual), conform with the
1948 Universal Declaration of Human Rights of which Niger is a signatory and are detailed
below. For a full English translation of Niger's Constitution, click here.