Chad ratifies protocol on African human rights court

Saturday February 6 2016

Chadian President Idriss Deby (left) arrives to attend the summit of the Lake Chad Basin Commission in Abuja on June 11, 2015. Chad has deposited its instrument of ratification of the protocol on the establishment of the African Court on Human and Peoples’ Rights, bringing the number of countries to have ratified it to 30. AFP PHOTO| PHILIP OJISUA

Chadian President Idriss Deby (left) arrives to attend the summit of the Lake Chad Basin Commission in Abuja on June 11, 2015. Chad has deposited its instrument of ratification of the protocol on the establishment of the African Court on Human and Peoples’ Rights, bringing the number of countries to have ratified it to 30. AFP PHOTO| PHILIP OJISUA 

By LUCAS BARASA
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Chad has deposited its instrument of ratification of the protocol on the establishment of the African Court on Human and Peoples’ Rights, bringing the number of countries to have ratified it to 30.

The instrument was signed on January 27 by Chad’s President Idriss Deby Itno and immediately deposited at the African Union headquarters in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia.

The ratification was promised by the Chad’s President when he met the court’s president, Justice Augustino Ramadhani, in N’djamena during a sensitisation visit to the country on 16-17 December, 2015.

President Deby assumed the AU annual rotating chairmanship last week in Addis Ababa from Zimbabwe President Robert Mugabe.

The other States which have ratified the protocol are: Algeria, Benin, Burkina Faso, Burundi, Cameroon, Côte d’Ivoire, Comoros, Congo, Gabon and The Gambia.
Others are: Ghana; Kenya, Libya, Lesotho, Malawi, Mali, Mauritania, Mauritius, Mozambique, Nigeria, Niger, Uganda, Rwanda, Arab Saharawi Republic , Senegal, South Africa, Tanzania, Togo and Tunisia.

The African Court on Human and Peoples' Rights is a continental court established by the AU to enhance the protection of human and peoples’ rights in Africa.
MAKE A DECLARATION

In addition to the ratification of the protocol, states have to make a declaration required under Article 34(6) of the protocol to allow individuals and NGOs to bring cases directly before the court.
Without such a declaration, the court would have no jurisdiction over cases brought by individuals and NGOs.
So far, only seven states have made the declaration.
These are: Burkina Faso, Côte d’Ivore, Ghana, Malawi, Mali, Rwanda and Tanzania.
The court was established by virtue of Article 1 of the Protocol to the African Charter on Human and Peoples’ Rights on the Establishment of an African Court on Human and Peoples’ Rights.
The protocol was adopted on 9 June 1998 in Burkina Faso and came into force on 25 January 2004. The court officially started its operations in November 2006.
The AU is made up of 54 member states.