As part of its human development, the Initiative for Community Development and Advancement of Social Orientation (ICODASO), has convened a summit on the implementation and impact assessment of the AU Charter.
The charter is an international legal instrument intended to promote and protect human rights and basic freedoms in Africa.
According to Mr. Chukwu Onuoha, the Programme Officer for ICODASO, the one day sensitisation programme was centered on the place of religion in the implementation of African Union Charter on Human and People’s Rights in Nigeria.
He noted that oversight and interpretation of the Charter is the task of the African Commission on Human and Peoples’ Rights, which was set up in 1987 and is now headquartered in Banjul, Gambia.
“A protocol to the Charter was subsequently adopted in 1998 whereby an African Court on Human and Peoples’ Rights was to be created. The protocol came into effect on 25 January, 2005” he said.
Onuoha noted that the charter not only includes rights for individuals but also for peoples.
“It also imposes duties, which is unique in international human rights instruments. The instrument is strongly African in focus, aiming to further African values and build on the virtues of African historical traditions, while alleviating human rights violations.
”The charter recognises what are regarded as universally accepted civil and political rights including the rights to non-discrimination, equality, life and personal integrity.”
Speaking on the Christian perspective of the charter, the CEO of Aaron & HUR Publishing, Pastor Victor Ayodele Basola said the sensitisation programme is to let people know about African charter and the benefits of the charter on the protection of human and people’s right.
“Apart from politics, religion leaders have a higher level of influence on people because if you can influence people’s life you can influence people’s thinking behaviour and they have a whole lot of power to do that.
“If African union charter talks about protection of people’s right and enforcing people’s and human right, religious leaders have a large rule to teach there people on what to do and what not to do that’s only if they know about the charter and love is the foundation of all human right” Basola said.