Human Rights

African Human Rights Journal published an editorial the end of year two of the Human and Peoples’ Rights Decade in Africa

As far as human rights are concerned, the rhetoric of AU member
states has little to do with reality. When it declared the Human Rights
Decade in June 2016, the AU Assembly pledged its ‘unflinching
determination to promote and protect human and peoples’ rights in
Africa and the need for the full implementation of human and
peoples’ rights instruments and decisions and recommendations
made by the AU organs with a human rights mandate’.1 More than
that, the Assembly also called on the AU Commission ‘to ensure the
independence and integrity of AU organs with human rights mandate
by shielding them from undue external influence’.2 Regrettably, it
turned out that it was not the threat of ‘undue external influence’ by
donors and non-governmental organisations (NGOs) from outside
Africa, but undue influence by the AU policy organs themselves
(culminating in Decision 1015 by the AU Executive Council in June
2018) that undermined the independence and integrity of the African
Commission.

publication on African Commission Bowing to political Pressure to withdraw CAL’s observer status

On August 8, 2018, the African Commission on Human and Peoples’ Rights (ACHPR) stripped the Coalition of African Lesbians (CAL) of its observer status following decisions by the African Union Executive Council that called on the ACHPR to consider “African values” when reviewing applications for observer status. The ACHPR’s decision to withdraw CAL’s observer status comes after years of advocacy efforts by CAL to obtain that status, and follows a drawn-out process before the ACHPR that has been marred by discriminatory statements on the part of both the continent’s human rights oversight body and the political organs of the African Union

AMSHER and CAL expresses concern that by holding its 64th session in Sharm El Sheik, Egypt

The acceptance of Egypt’s invitation to host this session further serves as a demonstration that the ACHPR has surrendered its independence to African States following Decision 1015 of the Executive Council. The NGO Forum further failed to honour a proposal put forward by Civil society organisations that met on 23 October 2018 in Banjul, to hold a “Peoples’ Commission” as an alternative to Egypt’s hosting of the African Commision and adopt appropriate resolutions. This is a betrayal of the peoples of Africa and the constituents represented through the NGO Forum.