AUC Chairperson calls for full respect of human rights in Africa

Addis Ababa, Ethiopia (PANA) - Although African countries have cast off the shackles of colonial and racist oppression, they need to do more to ensure the full respect of the rights of their people, African Union Commission (AUC) Chairperson Moussa Faki Mahamat stated on Africa Human Rights Day.

Commemorating the 2017 Africa Human Rights Day on Saturday, the Chairperson noted that the occasion meant “remembering the victims of human rights abuses, including mass atrocities and genocide.”

Mr. Mahamat recalled that 30 years ago,”in the spirit of furthering the advancement of our people, the African Commission on Human and People’s Rights (ACHPR) was established. The task of making these aspirations into reality is a long one, but we are confident that it will be achieved.”

The AUC chief noted that the past 12 months marked a significant turning point in the struggle to achieve human and peoples’ rights in Africa.

Last year was marked as the Africa Year of Human and Peoples’ Rights with emphasis on the rights of women, besides the declaration by the AU Assembly of the next 10 years as the Human and Peoples’ Rights Decade in Africa.

He said 2017 is dedicated to youth rights as it was declared the year of ‘Harnessing Youth Demographic Dividends through Investment in the Youth’. Its focus on youth rights is a culmination of the AU’s sustained move towards deepening all dimensions of the human and peoples’ rights culture in the continent

“Through this year’s Human Rights Day theme ‘Enhancing Youth Contribution - Towards Effective Implementation of the Action Plan of the Human and Peoples’ Rights Decade in Africa’, our Union is confirming that its priority is to empower its teeming youth population to play a central role in key areas of the continent’s engagement.

“Having the youth assuming a lead in policy formulation and implementation, as well as managing its rightful political, economic and social spaces, is paramount to shaping their future and ensuring a more prosperous present and future for Africa,” Mahamat said in a statement issued by the AUC in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia.

Underlining the AU’s commitment to engaging its Member States in order to take the necessary steps by developing youth-driven human and peoples' rights policies and programmes, he urged them, including the regional economic communities, to embark on similar exercise at the national and sub-regional levels.

Significance of the Africa Human Rights Day arose from the continent’s main text on human and peoples’ rights – the African Charter on Human and Peoples’ Rights – which formalized Africa’s commitment to the promotion and protection of human rights on the continent.

A number of institutions dedicated to the promotion and protection of human rights have been established, including the ACHPR, which became operational in November 1987.

Celebration of the 30th anniversary of ACHPR will take place in Banjul, Gambia, from 1-4 November 2017.
-0- PANA AR 21Oct2017

21 october 2017 15:50:49




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