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Maryam Uwais

Former Special Advisor to the Vice President on Social Investments. A legal practitioner and human rights activist with over 36 years cognate law practice experience including the Kano State Ministry of Justice, the Nigerian Law Reform Commission and the Central Bank of Nigeria.
• Ahmadu Bello University Zaria, Kaduna State- LL.B Hons. (1980)
• Nigerian Law School, Victoria Island, Lagos- BL (1981)
• Ahmadu Bello University, Zaria, Kaduna State- LL.M (1985)
• Nigerian Institute for Advanced Legal Studies- Certificate in Legal Drafting (1989)
• Nigerian Institute for Advanced Legal Studies- Certificate in Advanced Practice and Procedure (1995)
• College of Law, England and Wales- International Practice Diploma (IBA) in International Business Organizations (2003)
• Associate, Chartered Institute of Arbitrators (UK) (2006)
• Postgraduate Diploma in Islamic Banking and Insurance (2009)

I served as a Principal Partner of Wali Uwais & Co, an Abuja based law firm. Before then, served on the Council of the National Human Rights Commission, where I also worked as Special Rapporteur on Child Rights; the Board of the Justice Research Institute, the Kukah Centre as well as the Coalition Against Tobacco, amongst others. I also served on State, Federal and Continental Committees such as the Kano State Almajiri Committee, President Goodluck Johnathan's Presidential Advisory Council, the Northern Nigeria Governor's Committee on Reconciliation, Security Healing, as well as the African Committee of Experts on the Rights and Welfare of the Child for a period of 5 years.
I founded the Isa Wali Empowerment Initiative in December 2009 which targets the conditions of women and children in education, healthcare and empowerment. Worked as a consultant to the Open Society Initiative for West Africa, UNICEF, the World Bank and DFID.
Awards and Recognition
-Awarded a certificate in Advanced Practice and Procedure in 1985 and in Legal Drafting in 1989, from the Nigeria Institute for Advanced Legal Studies.
-Awarded with the National Honour of Member of the Order of the Federal Republic (MFR) by President Goodluck Johnathan GCFR (2011).
-The outstanding leadership award for contributions to equity, justice and human rights in Nigeria, by the Business and Professional Women in Nigeria Association (2012).
-An award by the Nigerian Human Rights Community in appreciation of contributions as member of the African Union Committee of Experts on the Rights and Welfare of the Child (2013).
-Selected as one of the five McNulty Laureates at the Aspen Institute, Colorado, following the activities of the Isa Wali Empowerment Initiative (2014).
-Selected as a National Human Rights Commission Awardee for outstanding contributions in the advancement of the rights of Women and Children in Nigeria (2015).
-Recipient of the Thisday Awards given to women who have distinguished themselves in the service of Nigeria (2015).
-Received the Humanitarian of the Year Award from the International Women’s Society (2011).
Written and published several articles on economic and social rights, interfaith dialogue, child justice administration and good governance.
• Prepared the working paper on Justice Sector Reform, (September, 2001) circulated to Stakeholders nation wide (for support and responses) as the initiative of the civil society and the NBA.
• Supervised the preparation of a handbook on the CRC and CEDAW, for the utilization of law enforcement agencies, and in particular the training of police and prison officers on how to treat children and women in their custody, which effort was supported by UNICEF.