The 46th session of the African Commission on Human and Peoples’ Rights

The African Commission on Human and Peoples’ Rights (ACHPR) held its 46th session in Banjul, The Gambia, 11-25 November 2009. The session was attended by 286 participants representing African State delegates, national human rights institutions, intergovernmental organizations as well as African and international NGOs. IWGIA facilitated the participation of 8 indigenous representatives.

The ACHPR renewed the mandate of the Working Group on Indigenous Populations/Communities for 2 years and Commissioner Musa Ngary Bitaye was reappointed as the Chairperson of the Working Group. Commissioner Reine Alapini Gansou was elected as the new Chairperson of the African Commission.


The participations of indigenous representatives in the ACHPR sessions remain very important, as it contributes to raising all participants’ awareness of indigenous peoples’ human rights. Under the agenda item on the human rights situation in Africa, the following organizations made statement on indigenous’ human rights situation:

  • IWGIA in collaboration with NGONET, Tanzania
  • CEMIRIDE, Kenya
  • COPORWA, Rwanda
  • ADHUC, Rep. Congo
  • ANDDH, Niger
  • OCDH, Rep. Congo
  • MRG in collaboration with PINGOs, Tanzania

Presentation of the Progress Report of the Working Group on Indigenous Populations / Communities

Commissioner Bitaye presented the Working Group’s report for the inter-session period between the 45th and the 46th session. The progress report can be found here.

The following organizations made statements after Commissioner Bitaye presentation:

  • IWGIA in collaboration with ACPROD, Dem. Rep. Congo
  • ADHUC, Rep. Congo
  • CEMIRIDE, Kenya
  • Human Rights Center, University of Pretoria
  • IPAC
  • ANDDH, Niger
  • Arid Lands Institute, Kenya
  • MRG

Examination of state reports

In conformity with article 62 of the African Charter on Human and Peoples’ Rights, the periodic report of the Republic of Congo, Ethiopia and Botswana were examined during the session. IWGIA and other partner organizations also contribute with shadow reports that provide an alternative source of information and assist the ACHPR’s commissioners in asking substantiated critical questions on indigenous peoples during the constructive dialogue with the state and in the drafting of the concluding observations. Shadow reports have been prepared for the Republic of Congo (in french) by ADHUC and Ethiopia by the East and Horn of Africa Institute. Questions and recommendations were drafted for Botswana by IWGIA.

Please find here the concluding observations for Botswana and Ethiopia.

Adoption of country visit reports

The Country visit report from Burkina Faso was adopted by the ACHPR during its private session.

For more information please refer to IWGIA 46th session report.