Center for Reproductive Rights
Onyema Afulukwe, who grew up in Nigeria, joined the Center in 2007. Her work focuses on the protection of reproductive health and rights in the African region through a broad range of advocacy and accountability strategies. She’s played an instrumental role in several fact-finding projects: She drafted Broken Promises: Human Rights, Accountability and Maternal Death in Nigeria, an investigation into maternal mortality, and helped author Legal Grounds: Reproductive and Sexual Rights in African Commonwealth Courts, Volume II, a compilation of case summaries and analyses. She has represented the Center in legal advocacy work with the African Commission on Human and Peoples’ Rights and the United Nations’ Committee on the Elimination of Discrimination against Women.
She began working in human rights convinced that African women couldn’t achieve their full potential without full access to them. Before her work at the Center, Onyema served as a Law Office Attaché with the Office of the Attorney General of Delta State, Nigeria. She has had several internships as a UN Monitor with the International Services for Human Rights in New York, contributing analytical reports about UN proceedings to two editions of the journal The Human Rights Monitor and also interned with Oxfam Canada in Toronto, working on HIV and women’s issues.
Onyema received her L.L.B. from the University of Nigeria. She holds a master’s in Public International Law from the London School of Economics and Political Science and an L.L.M. from the University of Toronto, where she was a Women’s Rights and Reproductive Health Scholar. She was admitted to the Nigerian bar in 2003 and the New York State Bar in 2006.