ACHPR: Report of the study group of freedom of association and assembly

In light of the visible trend of shrinking space for civil society and the persistent targeting of human rights defenders and their work, the African Commission on Human and People’s Rights created the Study Group on Freedom of Association and Assembly during its 46th Ordinary Session.

As part of the Study Group DefendDefenders (East and Horn of Africa Human Rights Defenders Project) contributed to the report, which was concluded and launched during the 56th Ordinary Session.

Download the full report in English or French.

Update: In April 2016, during its 58th Ordinary Session, the Commission adopted a resolution giving the Study Group a mandate to draft guidelines on freedom of association and peaceful assembly.

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Human Rights Defender of the month: Esther Tawiah

In Ghana, Esther Tawiah is one of the loudest voices for women empowerment and gender. It is also why she is one of the most loathed. Born and raised in New-Tafo in the country’s eastern region, Esther grew up surrounded by a culture that frowned at the idea of women participating in public affairs, and witnessed firsthand, the backlash those who dared to challenge that cultural norm faced.

“I grew up in a society where ageism and sexism were so entrenched. As a young person, you weren’t supposed to give your opinion on public issues, especially if you were a woman. Women who dared to speak up were caricatured and branded as frustrated, unmarriageable prostitutes, all designed to shut them up,” she says.

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