The 62nd Ordinary Session of the African Commission on Human and Peoples’ Rights (the Commission) will be held in Nouakchott, Mauritania, from 25 April to 9 May 2018, with the NGO Forum taking place from 21-23 April 2018.
As with all sessions of the ACHPR CAL is tracking themes and concerns that are of interest to the Secretariat and our members notably:
- The independence of African human rights system
- Women Human Rights Defenders
- Sexual and reproductive rights
- Sexual orientation, gender identity and expression
- The country reporting mechanism, in particular during this session, for Nigeria
ACHPR 62nd Session, 25 April to 9 May 2018
CAL’s Advocacy staff will be present in the first days of this session from 25 to 27 April 2018. You can access the agenda here. Some of the agenda items to take note of during this session include:
- The launch of the Guidelines on Elections and Access to Information in Africa
- Launch of the ACHPR Study on “HIV, the Law and Human Rights in the African Human Rights System: Key Challenges and Opportunities for Rights-Based Responses to HIV”
- Three state reports were to be tabled and discussed: Nigeria, Eritrea, and Togo. Togo has asked for their country review to be deferred.
The NGO Forum, 21– 23 April 2018
The main objective of the NGO Forum is to foster closer collaboration among NGOs and with the ACHPR, for the purpose of promoting and protecting human rights in Africa. CAL facilitated a panel in collaboration with AMSHeR on the role of civil society in preserving the African human rights system: threats and perspectives. This panel was moderated by CAL and featured speakers from Synergia Initiatives for Human Rights, The Human Rights Institute of South Africa (HURISA) and Human Rights Watch. The panel provided an opportunity to share and reflect on the background, context and history of CAL’s struggle to secure and retain observer status with the ACHPR; and activism on women’s rights, sexual and reproductive rights at the ACHPR. In addition, panelists brought their perspectives on the threats and future actions to support a strong and independent human rights mechanism on the continent.
CAL-AMSHeR-Synergia-ISLA Programme of Side-Events
CAL organised and hosted a series of side events in collaboration with our advocacy partners at the ACHPR.
- Synergia facilitated a workshop series introducing the African human rights system and advocacy strategies. These workshops are specifically tailored for newcomers attending the ACHPR.
- We hosted a discussion on Resolution 275 in collaboration with Synergia and AMSHeR. The session was well attended and participants shared many examples of the application of Resolution 275 in national advocacy.
- We screened “The Commission: From Silence to Resistance” and facilitated an interesting conversation that focused a lot on self-care, wellbeing and the need to forge a plural and collective agenda for advocacy on the continent.
- We also provided space for other NGOs and activists to organise workshops and panel discussions.
What do we hope to achieve at this session?
CAL’s objectives at the 62nd Session of the ACHPR and the NGO Forum preceding it are to:
- Articulate CAL politics and the lived realities of women, testing and building support for key CAL ideas and narratives.
- Strengthen CAL members’ understanding of the scope, strengths, dynamics and limitations of African regional human rights system and the various actors that engage there, and identifying possible avenues for future advocacy there.
- Continue to build interest and momentum for the establishment of a pan African Feminist WHRD Network.
- Fulfil and defend CAL’s observer status at the ACHPR through strong presence, participation in the NGO Forum and ACHPR
- Engage in a south-south learning process on the right to health, taking our lessons on KP REACH Learning into the space and listening and learning from work on related issues there with a view to future organising at the Commission.
Stakeholder letters and statements submitted to this session of the ACHPR:
- We prepared in collaboration with our Nigerian partner a stakeholder letter that was submitted to commissioners with mandates relevant to review of this State report. The stakeholder letter outlines key challenges and concerns in relation to the themes mentioned and suggests questions which should be posed to Nigeria.
- We presented a statement under item 5 on the situation of WHRDs on the continent with a specific focus on violations in Nigeria.