President Mohamed Bazoum of the Republic of Niger, has reiterated his country’s strong commitment to the protection of human rights and to the mandate of the African Court on Human and Peoples’ Rights.
President Bazoum also reaffirmed recognition of the African Court as the only continental judicial body of the African Union (AU); “Niger, as a constitutional democracy that embraces the rule of law and fundamental freedoms as prime governance standards, we support the African Court”.
President Bazoum stated during interaction in Niamey with African Court delegation headed by Lady-Justice Imani Daud Aboud, the President, and the Vice President, Justice Blaise Tchikaya and key Registry staff.
The President of Niger pledged to consider all processes towards the filing of the Declaration in a bid to affirm Niger’s human rights credentials and foster its participation in regional integration.
Highlighting the purpose of the African Court’s visit, Lady-Justice Aboud stated that “after its long-standing commitment made by ratifying the Court’s Protocol, it is high time that Niger filed the Declaration recognising the jurisdiction of the Court to entertain cases brought by individuals and NGOs”.
The African Court’s delegation undertook the visit to Niger as part of its sensitization programme to the Member States of the AU aimed at increasing awareness of the Court among various stakeholders, mainly governments.
During its four-day visit to Niger, the Court’s delegation also paid courtesy calls and held meetings with the Prime Minister, the Minister of Foreign Affairs, and the Minister of Communication in his capacity as Acting Minister of Justice.
Other meetings were with, the Speaker of Niger Parliament, the President of the Court of Cassation, the President of the Constitutional Court and the Chairperson of the National Human Rights Commission.
Engagements with these various stakeholders involved their respective roles in raising awareness domestically on the work of the Court and how best Niger can play its role in the attainment of the African Court’s mandate in line with relevant norms of the AU pertaining to human rights, democracy and the rule of law.
Various officials and stakeholders met during the visit assured the Court’s delegation of their eagerness to extend effective cooperation to the continental judicial institution in achieving its mandate to reinforce the protection of rights and freedoms primarily guaranteed to citizens by domestic mechanisms, which States establish in fulfilment of their obligations under African and international instruments.