African Court elects new President

By
Francis Ameyibor, GNA Arusha, Tanzania
     

Arusha, Sept. 7, GNA
– The African Court on Human and Peoples’ Rights (AfCHPR), has elected Justice
Sylvain Oré of Côte d’Ivoire as the new President and Justice Ben Kioko of
Kenya as the Vice President to serve a two- year mandate term.

The two elected at
AfCHPR’s 42nd Ordinary Session at Arusha, Tanzania, takes over from outgoing
President, Judge Augustino Ramadhani (Tanzania) and Vice President Lady Justice
Elsie Thompson (Nigeria), after they have served their full term.

The session also
swore-in two newly elected Judges Lady Justice Ntyam Ondo Mengue from Cameroon
and Lady Justice Marie Thérése Mukamulisa from Rwanda, who takes over the term
of Justice Fatsah Ouguergouz (Algeria) and Justice Duncan Tambala (Malawi).

The Judges during
the session would among other things examine about 70 applications and four
requests for Advisory Opinions.

The AfCHPR is made
up of 11 judges, nationals of Member States of the African Union elected in
their individual capacity.

The President and
Vice President are elected for the two years term, are eligible to be
re-elected for another final term of two years.

The Court meets four
times a year in Ordinary Sessions and may hold Extra-Ordinary Sessions.

The AfCHPR has
rolled out strategic module to create a pool of knowledge-based Editors and
Journalists to publicise its mandate to protect human rights on the Continent.

It forms part of the
African Court’s Communication Strategy to ensure that Information and
Communication policy forms part of its comprehensive strategy and must be
placed at the heart of its work and not as an add-on to its activities.

The pool would be
schooled on the broad framework of the African Union agenda on integration,
development and shared values captured in the Agenda 2063 initiative and the
African Governance Architecture (AGA).

Within the framework
of the strategic module the scores of editors and journalists from Southern,
Central, Western and Northern Regions would be trained from September 7 to
September 10 in Arusha, Tanzania.

The training of
editors and journalists would also serve as Training of Trainers.

The pool of skilful
and knowledge-based journalists would be ready to publicise the mandate of the
Court within the broad framework of the African Union agenda on integration,
development and shared values captured in the Agenda 2063 initiative and the
AGA.

It would focus on
enhancing professional skills on how to report African Court stories for
improved coverage and public awareness; and established a specific pool of
journalists tagged as “Champions of AfCHPR’’.

It would help in
building a network of professional editors and journalists that promotes the
exchange of experience, competition for better quality of work and the
development of senior journalists and editors who could act as future mentors
for younger journalists interested in the work of the Court.

The joint training
of four Regions is a result of a successful pilot training of 18 East African
journalists and editors conducted from May 19 to May 22, 2015 in Arusha.

The four joint
regional groupings identified for the trainings are: Southern Africa- Angola, Botswana,
Lesotho, Madagascar, Malawi, Mauritius, Mozambique, Namibia, Seychelles, South
Africa, Swaziland, Zambia and Zimbabwe

Central Africa-
Burundi, Cameroon, Central African Republic, Chad, Comoros, Congo, DR Congo,
Equatorial Guinea, Gabon and Sao Tome Principe.

Western Africa-  Ghana, Benin, Burkina Faso, Cape Verde, Côte
d’Ivore, The Gambia, Guinea, Guinea Bissau, Liberia, Mali, Niger, Nigeria,
Senegal, Sierra Leone, Togo and Northern Africa- Algeria, Egypt, Libya, Mauritania,
Sahrawi Republic and Tunisia.

The African Court
document explained that with the rapid growth of International Human Rights in
recent years there has been a growing international trend of setting up
regional and sub-regional human rights mechanisms such as the European Court of
Human Rights and the Inter -American Court of Human Rights.

On the African
continent, this trend has resulted into the creation of human rights bodies not
only at the sub-regional levels but also at the continental level.

The creation of the
African Court on Human and Peoples’ Rights (the Court) and the African
Commission on Human and Peoples’ Rights was part of the international trend.

GNA

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