DEATH PENALTY: SETS OUT THE AFRICAN CONFERENCE IN BENIN
July 2, 2014: Today were opened in Cotonou, capital of Benin, the three days works of the Continental Conference on the Abolition of the death penalty in Africa convened by the local government with the Commission on Human Rights and Peoples of the African Union in collaboration with Hands Off Cain and the Nonviolent Radical Party.
The conference was convened with a view to final adoption of the Additional Protocol to the African Charter of Human Rights and the vote to be held in the General Assembly of the United Nations resolution for a universal moratorium on capital executions.
The conference was opened by the Minister of Foreign Affairs of Benin Bako-Arifari Nssirou which confirmed the role of continental leadership that his country wants to play against the death penalty and for the promotion of human rights also before the vote at the United Nations next December.
Then he spoke the Chairman of the Working Group on the death penalty and extrajudicial summary or arbitrary executions in Africa of the African Commission, Silvie Zainaibo who recalled how, thanks to the work of his group, we have come to a text now ready for final adoption and that they can count on a regional instrument specifically dedicated to the abolition of the death penalty will consolidate the positive development that characterizes Africa towards the abolition of executions.
The opening ceremony was also attended by the Ambassador of the European Union, the representative of the Department for Political Affairs of the African Commission and an ex-convict to death, then exonerated, from Uganda.
The conference continued with a first plenary session on regional instruments for the protection of human rights chaired by Maya Sahli Fadel, mamber of the African Commission
This session was attended by academics Iya Philip Francis, Carlson Anyangwe, Christoph Heyns, the UN Special Rapporteur on extrajudicial, and Maria Donatelli of the World Coalition Against the Death Penalty.
In addition to an overview of the global and regional treaties and conventions, the discussion has also helped to strengthen criminal policy issues, the issues of justicialism, reversibility of choices and abolitionist of the privatization of justice and extrajudicial executions.
In the afternoon, there were five committees. on the role of MPs, of the regional economic commissions, of national human rights institutions, of the civil society and of the media and the various professional groups that may be involved in the debate on the death penalty.
At the site www.radioradicale.it you can see the inaugural session.