African Court makes a sensitization visit to Mozambique

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Lady Justice Imani Daud Aboud, President of the African Court on Human and Peoples’ Rights is leading a delegation of the African Continental Court to the Republic of Mozambique for a three-day sensitization engagement.

Other members include Lady Justice Tujilane R. Chizumila and Deputy Registrar Grace Wakio Kakai, along with other key Registry staff.

The primary objective of the sensitization visits is to enhance the protection of human rights in Africa.

Specific objectives include raising awareness about the African Court, encouraging ratification of the Protocol, and depositing the Declaration to grant individuals and NGOs direct access to the Court.

The African Court delegation would also educate potential applicants on accessing the Court and its procedures, promote public utilisation of the Court for settling human rights disputes, and encourage the Court’s utilisation for advisory opinions.

Lady Justice Aboud said the three-day visit from August 9-11, is to, among others, encourage Mozambique to deposit the Declaration that allows individuals and Non-Governmental Organisations to access the Court directly.

The African Court President, in a paper to the Ghana News Agency in Tema, emphasised that the Court’s success as a continental mechanism for human rights protection, established by the African Union Member States themselves, depends on wider acceptance and recognition of its work by African countries.

She stressed that “this universal acceptance and recognition will provide the Court with the legitimacy it needs to effectively fulfil its mandate.”

The delegation is scheduled to pay courtesy calls on various dignitaries, including the President of the Assembly of the Republic, Esperança Laurinda Francisco Nhiuane Bias; Vice President of the Supreme Court, Justice João António Beirão; and the Ombudsman, Isac Chande.

Others are Minister of Foreign Affairs and Cooperation, Verónica Nataniel Macamo Ndlovo; Minister of Justice, Constitutional, and Religious Affairs, Helena Mateus Kida; Vice-Attorney General, Alberto Paulo; and the President of the Bar Association of Mozambique, Carlos Martins.

Lady Justice Aboud noted that the visit marked a significant step, as the African Court had previously undertaken a similar visit 12 years ago, from August 25 to 26, 2011.

She explained that following the First Retreat of Legal Officers of the African Commission on Human and Peoples’ Rights, the African Committee of Experts on the Rights and Welfare of the Child, and the African Court that was held in Maputo in January 2022, the Court undertook to collaborate with Mozambique to organise a visit.

Mozambique deposited the instrument for the ratification of the African Charter on Human and Peoples’ Rights on March 7, 1990.

It became a state party to the Protocol to the African Charter on Human and Peoples’ Rights on the Establishment of an African Court on July 27, 2004, but has yet to deposit the Declaration under Article 34(6) of this Protocol, allowing individuals and Non-Governmental Organisations direct access to the Court.

The African Court was established by virtue of Article 1 of the Protocol to the African Charter on Human and Peoples’ Rights.

It complements the protective mandate of the African Commission on Human and Peoples’ Rights to enhance human rights protection on the continent.

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