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Forum on Co-operation Between NGOs and African Commission Underway

May 11, 2009, 6:17 AM

A three-day forum on the participation of NGOs in the 45th Ordinary Session of the African Commission on Human and People's Rights and the 19th African Human Rights Book Fair is underway at the Kairaba Beach Hotel.

The event, which ends today, has been organised by the African Centre for Democracy and Human Rights Studies (ACDHRS) in collaboration with the African Commission on Human and People's Rights (ACHPR) both organisations based in The Gambia.

At the end of the forum, resolutions and recommendations will be forwarded to the African Commission for consideration during the 45th session.

According to a press release from ACDHRS, the objective of the forum which will precede the 45th Ordinary Session of the African Commission, also to be held in The Gambia from the 13th to 27th May 2009, is to foster co-operation among and between NGOs as well as with the African Commission, with the aim of promoting and protecting human rights in Africa.

The release stated that the first theme on Overview of Human Rights Situation in Africa would examine the situation of human rights on the continent.

The theme on Special Interest Groups will discuss, among others, issues relating to Prevention and Prohibition of Torture in Africa, the Situation of Refugees and Internally Displaced Persons in Africa, Freedom of Expression in Africa, the Situation of Women's Rights, Prisons and Penal Reform, Rights of Children, the Death Penalty in Africa, Elections in Africa.

The final theme will be on Networking for Human Rights which will look at updates on the Human Rights Council as well as Women for a Better Work Network.

The African Centre's 19th African Human Rights Book Fair will run concurrently with the Forum and the Commission's Public Session. The objective of the Book Fair is to give human rights NGOs the opportunity to share their materials with other NGOs, and to promote networking of human rights organisations on the continent and beyond.