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The African Union Commission and the network for African national human rights institutions sign mou to strengthen cooperation and collaboration

By African Union Commission (AUC)
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The African Union Commission (AUC) and the Network for African National Human Rights Institutions (NANHRI) have today signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) for strengthening cooperation and collaboration between the two parties to facilitate the development and integration agenda of the African Union.

The MoU was signed by H.E. Dr. Aisha L. Abdullahi, Commissioner for Political Affairs of the African Union Commission, and Dr. Banda Chemuta Divine, Chairperson of the Network of African National Human Rights Institutions. Dr. Aisha L. Abdullahi expressed her appreciation for the level of existing working relationship between the two organizations and described the signed MoU as a platform to strengthen this important partnership.

Commissioner for Political Affairs also made reference to the Declaration of 2016 as "African Year of Human Rights in Africa with Special Focus on the Rights of Women”, which provides an opportunity for the entire continent to take stock of the human rights situation on the continent in general, and the rights of women in particular. She further added that the celebration of 2016 seeks to, among other things, enhance public awareness about human rights instruments and mechanisms; assess the ratification and implementation of the human rights instruments, in particular, the Maputo Protocol, and the progress made in advancing the rights of women since the adoption of the Protocol.

Dr. Abdullahi concluded by calling on the Network of African National Human Rights Institutions to encourage Member States to develop policies, plans of actions and programmes on the promotion and protection of human and peoples' rights, and specific programmes with the intention of mainstreaming gender in all spheres of life, so as to boost the development of women in Africa.

On his part Mr. Dr. Banda Chemuta Divine, reaffirmed the commitment of NANHRI to closely work with the AUC towards the two institutions' Common goals as well as the pursuit of the Human Rights promotion and protection as provided for in the AUC Strategic Plan and the AU Vision 2063”.

According to the signed MoU, the Commission and JWF will cooperate to explore opportunities for cooperation and non-exclusive partnership in the following areas:

Fostering participation of National Human Rights Institutions in policy development at the continental level; Jointly promote and protect human and peoples' rights in Africa; Support the implementation of the AU Human Rights Strategy for Africa; Support the implementation of Project 2016; Information generation and dissemination on issues related to human rights.