Maputo, 26 January, 2022: The African Union Human Rights Organs namely the African Commission on Human and People’s Rights (ACHPR), the African Committee of Experts on the Rights and Welfare of the Child (ACERWC), and the African Court on Human and People’s Rights (AfCHPR) are holding a retreat of legal officers of the three organs from 26-28 January, in Maputo, Republic of Mozambique, to brainstorm and exchange views on pertinent and substantive issues of common interests.
In her statement during the opening session, the President of the AfCHPR, Honourable Lady Justice Imani Daud Aboud, reiterated the urgent need for synergized efforts between the three organs, especially during this crucial era of the African Union reform, she urged the organs to unite on complementarity or face the risk of perishing on dysfunctionality. She stated that promotional complementarity coming from the ACHPR and the ACERWC will inevitably impact the protective complementarity stated under Article 2 of the Protocol establishing the Court.
Honourable Commissioner Remy Ngoy Lumbu, Chairperson of the ACHPR, expressed his wish that the discussions will ultimately make it possible to refine the working methods for the full realization of the rights guaranteed by the African Charter on Human and Peoples’ Rights, the African Charter on Human and Peoples’ Rights, the African Charter on the Rights and Welfare of the Child and other relevant regional and international human rights instruments. He hoped that the rich presentations during the retreat will result in formulating concrete propositions that will enable the three organs to fulfil Aspiration 3 of the Agenda 2063 of the African Union which envisages “an Africa of good governance, democracy, respect for human rights, justice and the rule of law” in the Africa We Want.
On behalf of the Chairperson of the ACERWC, Honourable Joseph Ndayisenga, Mrs Catherine Wanjiru Maina, affirmed the ACERWC’s commitment to strengthen its collaboration with its sister organs as stated under Rule 82(2) of the ACERWC’s Revised Rules of Procedures, which provides that the ACERWC should establish collaboration mechanisms with the ACHPR and the AfCHPR on common matters of interests.
The retreat was opened by the Honourable Minister of Justice, Constitutional and Religious Affairs of the Republic of Mozambique, Honourable Helena Mateus Kida, who in her opening statement stressed the importance for the three Human Rights organs to establish mechanisms for quick consultations on judicial matters. She highlighted the crucial role a synergised collaboration between the organs will have on the consolidation of a culture of the rule of law, good governance and human rights on the continent.
This joint retreat which is the first of its kind, provides for a platform to highlight the functioning, success areas and challenges faced by the technical bodies of these three organs, as well as propose practical solutions to enhance the complementarity functions among these institutions.
The retreat is expected to provide a framework for coordination among the three organs, and the adoption of a staff exchange programme to further strengthen the collaboration between the organs in order to strengthen the exchange of best practices, ideas and skills in the implementation of their respective mandates.
NOTES FOR EDITORS:
1. The African Commission on Human and Peoples’ Rights (ACHPR) is a treaty body of the African Union stablished under Article 30 of the African Charter on Human and Peoples’ Rights (the African Charter), the founding treaty of the African Human Rights system, for the promotion and protection of human rights in Africa. The mandate of the ACHPR is defined in Article 45 of the African Charter and includes: the protection and promotion of human and peoples’ rights on the continent; the interpretation of any provision of the African Charter, at the request of a State Party, an OAU institution or an African Organization recognized by the African Union; and the formulation of principles and rules on fundamental freedoms on which African governments can base their legislation.
2. The African Court on Human and Peoples’ Rights is established under virtue of Article 1 of the Protocol to the African Charter on Human and Peoples’ Rights on the Establishment of the African Court on Human and Peoples’ Rights. The mission of the Court is to enhance the protective mandate of the Commission by strengthening the human rights protection system in Africa and ensuring respect for and compliance with the Charter, as well as other international human rights instruments, through judicial decisions.
3. The African Committee of Experts on the Rights and Welfare of the Child draws its mandate from Articles 32-46 of the African Charter on the Rights and Welfare of the Child. The principal mission of the Committee is to protect and promote the rights and welfare of the African child and monitor the implementation of the African Children’s Charter.
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Dr Robert Eno| Registrar | AfCHPR |Tel: +255 27 297 0430/31/32/33/34 | Email: Robert.Eno@african-court.org