From October 18-19, 2023, a delegation of the Ethiopian Human Rights Commission (EHRC) participated in the 6th National Human Rights Institutions (NHRIs) Forum organised by the Network of African National Human Rights Institutions (NANHRI), the African Commission on Human and Peoples’ Rights (African Commission), and the Tanzania Commission for Human Rights and Good Governance (CHRAGG), in Arusha, Tanzania. The theme of the Forum was: “The 30th Anniversary of the Paris Principles and the 20th Anniversary of the Maputo Protocol: Amplifying the Role of NHRIs in the Protection of the Rights of Women and other Vulnerable Groups in Africa”. EHRC presented on a panel discussion highlighting the progress, challenges, and role of NHRIs in advocating for the ratification and implementation of The Protocol to the African Charter on Human and Peoples’ Rights on the Rights of Women in Africa (Maputo Protocol).
From October 20 -30, 2023, EHRC represented by the Chief Commissioner Dr. Daniel Bekele and Dr. Abdi Djibril, Commissioner for Civil, Political and Socio-Economic Rights, participated in the public proceedings of the African Commission 73rd Ordinary Session. The African Commission, a quasi-judicial body established under the African Charter on Human and Peoples’ Rights (the African Charter) to promote and protect human and peoples’ rights in Africa, holds ordinary sessions in the presence of State Parties, NHRIs, civil society organisations and other stakeholders twice a year.
During the session, EHRC presented its statement to the African Commission on situation of human rights in Ethiopia in the inter-session period (May – October 2023), under Agenda Item 3: Human Rights Situation in Africa. EHRC further presented its statement on the activity reports of the Special Rapporteur on Prisons, Conditions of Detention, and Policing in Africa, the Working Group on the Rights of Older Persons and People with Disabilities in Africa, and Working Group on Economic, Social, and Cultural Rights in Africa under Agenda Item 5: Activity Reports of Members of the Commission and Special Mechanisms.
EHRC also presented as a panellist at a side event held on the margins of the session in a stakeholder’s dialogue on ratification of the Protocol Establishing the African Court on Human and Peoples’ Rights and increased direct access to the African Court on Human and Peoples’ Rights.
Additionally, the EHRC delegation held a constructive engagement with some Members of the African Commission, Special Procedures of the Human Rights Council present at the session, international non-governmental organisations working in Ethiopia, Ethiopian diaspora civil society organisations and other stakeholders.
The following important guidance documents were launched during the public session: African Guiding Principles on the Human Rights of All Migrants, Refugees, and Asylum Seekers; Study on the African Responses on Migration; Study on the Use of Force by Law Enforcement Officers and Prison Guards: Training Tool on the Use of Force; Newsletter on Maputo@20: A Celebration of 20 Years of the Rights of Women and Girls in Africa; Report on the Jurisprudence on Article 5 of the African Charter on Human and Peoples’ Rights; CPTA’s 2023 Newsletter; and Newsletter of the Special Rapporteur on Human Rights Defenders and Focal Point on Reprisals.