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Nigerian Standup Comedians and Differently Abled Persons from a Human Rights Lens

Nigerian Standup Comedians and Differently Abled Persons from a Human Rights Lens

The Nigeria popular art space came to life about a decade ago with the coming of Nollywood. Standup comedy followed closely with various shows in Abuja, Lagos, Port Harcourt and other major cities. The impact of the industry on the corporate image of Nigeria is not one that can be underestimated. The success stories of [...]

The Crime of “Homosexuality” under Cameroon Criminal Law

The Crime of “Homosexuality” under Cameroon Criminal Law

According to Human Rights Watch there are 76 countries in the world that prosecute people for having consensual sexual relations with a person of the same sex. In Cameroon,  the rate of enforcement of anti-homosexual laws  is amongst the highest on the globe. Over the past three years, charges have been brought against 28 people [...]

Mmusi Ruling a Watershed Moment for Gender and Customary Law in Botswana and Beyond

Mmusi Ruling a Watershed Moment for Gender and Customary Law in Botswana and Beyond

On September 3rd, the Court of Appeal in Botswana decided that Edith Mmusi’s parents’ home belonged to her and her sisters. In doing so, Botswana’s highest court struck a blow to rigid versions of customary law and breathed new meaning into the Botswana Constitution’s provisions to prevent unfair discrimination. Edith Mmusi’s story Edith Mmusi, 80, [...]

Spatial Justice in South African Evictions Jurisprudence

Spatial Justice in South African Evictions Jurisprudence

Apartheid’s legacy has entrenched patterns of spatial injustice in South Africa. Poor, overwhelmingly black residents are geographically concentrated in poorly serviced townships or informal settlements on the periphery of towns and cities. Redressing the spatial disparities created by apartheid’s land and housing laws is a major policy challenge identified in the National Development Plan 2030 [...]

Think This Way: How Zimbabweans Adopt, Hold and Express Their Political Ideologies

Think This Way: How Zimbabweans Adopt, Hold and Express Their Political Ideologies

When American jurist Ben Cardozo said that the freedom of thought is “the matrix, the indispensable condition, of nearly every other form of freedom,” it was no idle talk. His words were- and are still- true. Other civil and political rights are largely under siege in Zimbabwe because of the curtailment of this freedom. Zimbabweans [...]

Corporal Punishment in Namibia Revisited

Corporal Punishment in Namibia Revisited

In the landmark 1991 judgement of the Namibian Supreme Court in Ex Parte: Attorney-General, In Re Corporal punishment by Organs of State, Berker CJ remarked in a separate judgement, that little “agreement exists in respect of the desirability or otherwise of corporal punishment in schools.” 22 years later this statement still rings true. In highly [...]

Constitutionalising the Violation of the Right of the Girl Child in Nigeria: Exploring Constitutional Safeguards and Pitfalls

Constitutionalising the Violation of the Right of the Girl Child in Nigeria: Exploring Constitutional Safeguards and Pitfalls

The Senate of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, the highest legislative arm in Nigeria, is on the verge of enshrining the legality of child marriage. This is a direct implication of the voting pattern anchored by Senator Yerima (former governor of Zamfara State) refusing the deleting of Section 29 (4) (b) of Nigeria’s current Constitution.  [...]

Justice Edwin Cameron on the United Nations Free and Equal Campaign

Justice Edwin Cameron on the United Nations Free and Equal Campaign

On Friday 26th July, in Cape Town, the United Nations launched a new international campaign to counter homophobia, dubbed the Free and Equal Campaign. I was privileged to share the platform with UN High Commissioner for Human Rights, Judge Navi Pillay, and Archbishop Emeritus Desmond Tutu. It was a happy event, with strong presentations and [...]

Cash Transfers from Mineral Resource Wealth: Evidence from Africa

Cash Transfers from Mineral Resource Wealth: Evidence from Africa

In a previous post, Maniza Naqvi discussed how cash transfers from natural resource wealth revenues have the potential to reduce poverty in resource-rich countries. In this post, she discusses how direct dividends from natural resource wealth could benefit the African continent. Marcelo Giugale, World Bank’s Director of Economic Policy and Poverty Reduction Programs for Africa, [...]

Zimbabwe’s New Constitution: The Interplay between Election Reform and Constitutional Reform

Zimbabwe’s New Constitution: The Interplay between Election Reform and Constitutional Reform

The new Constitution of Zimbabwe was signed into law on 22 May 2013. It contains several provisions that are encouraging: a wider bill of rights including socio-economic rights, the requirement that executive powers be shared between the cabinet and the president, provisions ensuring access to the media to all political parties, and guidelines on the conduct [...]

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A Quick Overview

Blog posts have been coming in thick and fast over the last month. To help you get up to speed, the editorial team has put together a quick summary of some of the major themes. Justice Verma Committee on Indian sexual violence laws The Justice Verma Committee submitted its report on the reform of India’s [...]