By Mamour. M. Mbenga

The forum on the participation of NGOs in the 58th ordinary session of the African commission on Human and Peoples’ Rights commenced at Paradise Suites Hotel on 3 April and ended 5 April.

The 32nd African Human rights book fair at which the current human rights and democracy challenges in African were discussed also commenced on 3 April.

The forum attracts human rights organisations across the continent.

The second day session on Monday, 4th April 2016, discussed various issues with different panels. A panel of discussion discussed issues regarding the follow-up to the ACHPR resolution 391 on the Freedom of Association and Assembly (FOAA) and its Guidelines. This panel was chaired by Clement Voule- FOAA study group. The fifth (5th) panel dealt with mediation and the space for citizens in the restoration and maintenance of peace and democracy. Issues affecting Lesotho, Namibia and South Africa were also discussed. The panelist was Muluka Miti-Drummond (SALC).

The main issues discussed during day two of the forum include all the following topics: People living with HIV (PLHIV) and those high risk and vulnerable to HIV infection, human rights defenders in Africa, peace and security,  Anti-Corruption, prevention of torture in Africa, rights of older persons and people with disabilities in Africa, economic, social and cultural rights in Africa, prisons and conditions of Detention in Africa, rights of women in Africa, Freedom of Expression and Access to Information in Africa, etc. A group discussion was also done by various participants on various topics at the end of the forum.

The NGOs are expected to come up with recommendations and resolutions that will be forwarded to the 58th ordinary session of the African Commission on Human and people’s rights, which is expected to start on the 6th April 2016, for consideration. Madam Hannah Forster, executive director African Centre for Democracy and Human Rights Studies, told Foroyaa the forum is aimed at bringing together NGOs across the length and breadth of the continent to discuss issues on Human rights violation in Africa and work on a final resolution and recommendations in addressing those issues.

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