“African Union (AU) member states must ratify all the African Shared Value instruments and domesticate them on national level,” the Chairperson of the African Union Commission (AU), Dr Nkosazana Dlamini Zuma has said last week during the commemoration of Africa Human Rights Day in Arusha, Tanzania.
Zuma who was in Arusha to officiate at the African Human Rights Day said the time had come to for all stakeholders to collectively promote and protect human rights in the continent and in particular, the rights of women. Zuma added that women are the backbone of Africa’s socio-economic development and structural transformation.
“Since the early 1990’s, when many African countries opened up their political systems through regular multi-party elections, several African countries have increased women’s representation in decision making structures,” she said. Moreover, Zuma added that some African countries including Burkina Faso and Uganda have constitutional provisions reserving seats in National Parliament for women, while in some other political parties in other countries adopted internal rules to include a certain percentage of women as candidates for (political) offices.
Zuma further explained that this year’s theme, ‘Women’s Rights our collective Responsibility’ was timely and appropriate, as it coincides with the Declaration of the African Union’s Heads of state and Government theme for the year 2016 ‘The African Year of Human Rights with Particular Focus on the Rights of Women’. Rights,” she said.