Pambazuka News has a special issue on the African Commission for Peoples and Human Rights which recently denied “Observer Status” to the Coalition of African Lesbians.
Fikile Vilakazi and Sibongile Ndashe
The Coalition of African Lesbians (CAL) says it is ‘extremely angered’ that their application for observer status before the African Commission on Human and Peoples’ Rights was rejected. ‘…this decision, if not challenged and reconsidered, will legitimise ongoing state and non-state violence against LGBTI people in Africa.’
Centre for Human Rights, University of Pretoria
The Coalition of African Lesbians (CAL) has been refused observer status by the African Commission on Human and Peoples’ Rights. In the face of increased homophobia, the message sent out is that members of sexual minorities are ‘free game’, says the Centre for Human Rights at the University of Pretoria.
By denying observer statues to the Coalition of African Lesbians (CAL), the African Commission on Human and Peoples’ Rights is endorsing ‘the flagrant impunity’ enjoyed in most African states for violations of the rights of lesbian and gay people, argues Wendy Isaack.
Sokari Ekine and Mia Nikasimo
By denying the rights of LGBTI people, ACPHR is ‘facilitating the continual criminalisation of LGBTI individuals and is ‘absolutely complicit in the verbal, physical and sexual abuse of LGBTI people which goes unchallenged in country after country,’ write Sokari Ekine and Mia Nikasimo.
Doublespeak on LGBTI rights at the African Commission
The Coalition of African Lesbians meets all the eligibility criteria for observer status. So why has the ACHPR refused to award it to them, asks Joel Nana.
The decision by the African Commission on Human and Peoples’ Rights to reject an application for observer status from the Coalition of African Lesbians has serious political implications, writes Jane Bennett.
This paper discusses the relevance of the issue of sexual orientation to the African Commission on Human and Peoples’ Rights, while recognising the controversial nature of the subject, and suggests ways in which the commission can proceed.
‘If the body that is supposed to protect our human rights denies us that space … everyone is going to take advantage of that denial to harass us,’ says activist Kasha Jacqueline, following the ACHPR’s refusal to grant observer status to the Coalition of African Lesbians.
The ACHPR’s refusal to award observer status to the Coalition of African Lesbians is further evidence of its desire to silence the voice of African women, writes Rose Wanjiku. It’s time to speak out.
‘Can we truly silence a group or deny them a voice at the one place they should feel the safest?’ writes Asha Ramgobin, in a plea for the ACHPR to reconsider its decision not to award the Coalition of African Lesbians observer status.