Kampala, Uganda | THE INDEPENDENT | The African Judicial Dialogue has ended with the adoption of a draft action plan for the promotion and protection of Human and People’s Rights on the Continent.
The draft outlines 18 action points for promotion and protection of Human Rights. It will be taken to the Assembly of Heads of States of the African Union for endorsement and subsequent enactment of implementation protocols.
All the recommendations were structured around the four major themes of the Fourth Judicial Dialogue namely the roles of Judiciaries in the fight against terrorism, promotion of nationalities and the rights of Indigenous people.
The others are the roles of Judiciaries in managing election disputes, addressing statelessness, refugees and migration crisis. Plenary hit a deadlock on terrorism calling on 44 state parties signatories to the Protocol which established the African Court on Human and People’s Rights to put in place necessary instruments for addressing the emerging challenge of terrorism.
Dr Yorokamu Bamwine, Uganda’s Principal Judge who chaired the National Steering Committee which organized the dialogue said majority of the identified actions points are already outlined in the national constitution.
Dr Bamwine represented the Speaker of Parliament Rebecca Kadaga at the closing ceremony. In her message, Kadaga urged the judiciaries to firmly exert their influences on the Continent to prevent abuses and violations of Human rights.
Kadaga recommended that “the judicial experiences shared at the dialogue be incorporated into best practices on the Continent for upholding human rights”. She said the Ugandan Parliament stood firm to dismantle Nalufenya torture Chamber and other safe houses in Uganda to demonstrate its resolve for human rights and the principle of fair trial and justice.
The President of the African Court on Human and People’s Rights Justice Syvain Ore said the dialogue achieved most of its objectives.
Justice Ore said the Court believes that the African Charter on Human and People’s Rights will now inspire national courts to demonstrate steadfast courage, independence and integrity in their dispensation of their duties.
Ambassador Thomas Quartey Kwesi, the Deputy Chairperson of the African Union Commission said it was impressive that themes of the dialogue had to be expanded to cover critical issues such as the land rights of indigenous people and the land tenure system for indigenous communities.
“The dialogue squarely placed you, African judiciaries on the firm trajectory of your roles in elections, affairs of the indigenous people, nationality and terrorism. It is now your duties to ensure that integrated implementation mechanisms are put in place as proposed by President Yoweri Museveni” he stated.
President Museveni told the Dialogue on Wednesday during the opening of the dialogue that African judiciaries should strike a balance between the diverse African culture and conventional laws embodied in the regional, continental and International Human Rights Charters.