Working Group on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights (ECOSOC Rights)

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TABLE OF CONTENT

SECTION 1
1. Introduction

SECTION II
2. Activities undertaken during the Inter-Sessional Period as:     

i. Member of the Commission; 
ii. Chairperson of the Working Group on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights in Africa; 
iii. Member of the Committee on the Protection of the Rights of People Living with HIV (PLHIV) and those at Risk, Vulnerable to and Affected by HIV; 
iv. Member of the Working Group on the Rights of Older Persons and Persons with Disabilities; and
v. Country Monitoring: Urgent Appeals & Press Statements 

SECTION III
3. Situation of ECOSOC Rights on the Continent 

4. Challenges & Recommendations

SECTION 1 – INTRODUCTION

1. This Report is submitted in accordance with Rules 25(3) and 64 of the Rules of Procedure 2020, of the African Commission on Human and Peoples’ Rights (the Commission) and covers the activities undertaken during the inter-session period between the 71st and 73rd Ordinary Sessions of the Commission.

 

2. The Report covers activities I undertook in my capacities as a Member of the Commission, the Chairperson of the Working Group on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights; Member of the Committee on the Protection of the Rights of People Living with HIV (PLHIV) and those at Risk, Vulnerable to and Affected by HIV (the Committee on PLHIV); and Vice Chairperson of the Working Group on Older Persons and Persons with Disabilities in Africa.

 

3. The Report is divided into three (3) sections as follows: 

(a) Section I: Introduction

(b) Section II: 
 -Part I - Activities undertaken in my capacity as a Member of the Commission; 
 -Part II – Activities undertaken in my capacity as the Chairperson of the Working Group on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights in Africa; and 
 -Part III – Activities undertaken in my capacity as a Member of the Committee on the Protection of the Rights of People Living with HIV (PLHIV) and those at   Risk, Vulnerable to and Affected by HIV (the Committee);
 -Part IV- Activities undertaken in my capacity as Vice Chairperson  of the Working Group on the Rights of Older Persons and Persons with Disabilities; and
 -Part V- Country Monitoring: Urgent Appeals & Press Statements

(c) Section III:
 -Part I - Situation of ECOSOC Rights on the Continent; and 
 -Part II - Conclusion and Recommendations.

SECTION II – INTER-SESSION ACTIVITIES

PART I:  ACTIVITIES UNDERTAKEN IN MY CAPACITY AS A MEMBER OF THE 
                 COMMISSION 

A. 71st Ordinary Session of the Commission

4. From 21st April to 13th May 2022, I participated in the 71st Ordinary Session of the Commission, held virtually. The Commission discussed urgent human rights issues on the Continent, considered and adopted decisions on Communications and other documents, as well as examined Periodic State Reports.

 

5. The Final Communiqué of the 71st  Ordinary Session of the Commission is available on the Commission’s website at: https://www.achpr.org/sessions/info?id=400 

B. 72nd Ordinary Session of the Commission

6. From 19th July to 2nd August 2022, I participated in the 72nd Ordinary Session of the Commission held virtually. During the Session, the Commission considered outstanding items from its previous Sessions, including Communications, Resolutions, Reports and other documents.

 

7. The Final Communiqué of 72nd Ordinary Session is available on the Commission’s website at: https://www.achpr.org/sessions/info?id=401 

C. Meetings of the African Union Policy Organs

8. As part of the delegation of the Commission to the Meetings of the African Union (AU) Policy Organs, together with Honourable Rémy Ngoy Lumbu, Chairperson of the Commission, Honourable Maya Sahli-Fadel, Vice-Chairperson of the Commission and staff of the Secretariat, I participated in the following meetings:  Consideration of the Report of the 44th Ordinary Session of the Permanent Representatives’ Committee held on 11th July 2022; the 41st Ordinary Session of the Executive Council held from 14 to 15 July 2022 and the 4th Mid- Year Coordination Meeting between Member States, AU, and the MYCM held on 17 July 2022, respectively, in Lusaka, Zambia.

 

9. The meetings adopted various reports and decisions for implementation by the African Union Commission and Organs of the AU.

D. 5th NHRIs Forum 

10. On 19th October 2022, in Banjul, The Gambia, on the margins of the 73rd Ordinary Session of the Commission, I was invited by the Network of African National Human Rights Institution (NANHRI) to the 5th NHRIs Forum on the theme “Trade and Human Rights in the African Continental Free Trade Area (AfCFTA) Agreement: Inclusive Implementation of the AfCFTA with participation of Vulnerable populations.  

 

11. I participated in Session 1 under the theme “The 35th Anniversary Celebrations of the Establishment of the ACHPR- Reflections on Enhancing the Collaboration between NHRIs and the ACHPR.”

PART II:  ACTIVITIES UNDERTAKEN IN MY CAPACITY AS THE CHAIRPERSON OF THE WORKING GROUP ON ECONOMIC, SOCIAL AND CULTURAL RIGHTS IN AFRICA

A. Joint Meeting of the Working Group on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights in Africa & UNAIDS

12. On 18th May 2022, as Chairperson of the Working Group on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights in Africa (Working Group on ECOSOC), I participated in the Joint Meeting of the Working Group on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights in Africa & UNAIDS, held virtually. The meeting was organised to consider the draft of the Joint Study on the Right to Health and its Financing in Africa, mandated by the Commission’s Resolution ACHPR/Res. 446 (LXVI) 2020, which tasked the Working Group on ECOSOC in collaboration with UNAIDS to conduct the Joint Study.

 

13. The Meeting was attended by Members and Expert Members of the Working Group on ECOSOC and representatives from UNAIDS.

 

B. Second Joint High Level Continental Conference on the Right to Health and Social Protection in Africa

14. From 27th to 29th June 2022, as Chairperson of the Working Group on ECOSOC with the Special Rapporteur on the Rights of Women in Africa, Honourable Commissioner Janet Ramatoulie Sallah-Njie, we jointly organized a Second High Level Continental Seminar on the Right to Health and Social Protection in Africa (Second Conference) in Windhoek, Namibia. The Second Conference, which was part of the promotion mandate of the Commission, was organized within the framework of Article 45 of the African Charter on Human and Peoples’ Rights (African Charter) and was funded by the European Union (EU) under the EU/AGA Support Project 2021-2023.

 

15. The Second Conference was organized to provide an opportunity for stakeholders from Northern and Southern Africa to be sensitized on issues in respect of the right to health care, health services and social protection.  The Second Conference followed the first Joint High Level Continental Conference which was held from 8th to 10th December 2021 in Dakar, Senegal, which I had reported on during the 71st Ordinary Session of the Commission. 

 

16. The main objective of the Second Joint High Level Continental Seminar was to raise awareness and remind States Parties to the African Charter of their obligations under the African Charter, the Maputo Protocol and other relevant instruments towards the provision of adequate and affordable health care and social protection services, as well as commit to give priority to health care and social protection, by undertaking concrete legislative and other measures including reforms of their health sectors. 

 

17. The Second Conference was attended by Honourable Commissioners, Expert Members of the Working Group on ECOSOC, representatives of Government Institutions, Parliamentarians, NHRIs, International Organizations, NGOs, Academic Institutions, Health Workers and Journalists and facilitated by staff of the Secretariat of the Commission. The Second Conference adopted Conclusions and Recommendations, which can be accessed on the website of the Commission on: https://www.achpr.org/news/viewdetail?id=231 

 

C. TV Interview on Namibia’s National Television

18. On 28thJune 2022, on the margins of the Second Joint High Level Continental Conference on the Right to Health and Social Protection in Africa, held in Windhoek, Namibia, I was invited by the State Television of Namibia as a guest on the Good Morning Show to talk about the two conferences the Commission was organising in Windhoekh -Second Joint High Level Continental Conference on the Right to Health and Social Protection in Africa and the Second Continental Conference on the Impact of COVID-19 on HIV Responses in Africa held from 27th  to 29th  June 2022 and 30th  June to 2nd July 2022, respectively.

 

D. Meeting with Human Rights Watch

19. On 21st September 2021, together with, the Special Rapporteur on the Rights of Women in Africa, Honourable Commissioner Janet Ramatoulie Sallah-Njie, we participated in a Meeting organised by Human Rights Watch (HRW), held virtually, to discuss Human Rights Watch most recent findings and work on the rights of pregnant students and adolescent mothers across the African continent. 

 

20. The meeting informed us that reports are published by HRW annually, to provide a status report on steps taken by Member States on the subject matter and also provide concrete human rights analysis of how country policies and laws comply with or hinder their human rights obligations. The meeting agreed on next steps which includes collaboration the Working Group on ECOSOC and that of the Special Rapporteur on the Rights of Women, as well as the African Committee of Experts on the Rights and Welfare of the Child.

 

E. Meeting on Project Proposal : Strengthening the ACHPR to address the challenges posted by Non Communicable diseases (NCDs) in Africa 

21. On 4 October 2022, I participated in a meeting held virtually with Dullah Omar Institute, University of Western Cape, the Kenya Legal and Ethical Issues Network on HIV & Aids (KELIN) and the O’Neill Institute for National and Global Health Law at George Town University. The meeting was organised by the above- mentioned stakeholders to propose to the Commission a Project on Strengthening the Commission to Address the Challenges posted by Non-Communicable Diseases (NCDs) in Africa.

 

22. The meeting gave an overview of the project as well as, identify various activities envisaged in the project, in particular the conduct of a Background Study on the link between NCDs and Human Rights in Africa.

 

F. Side –Event: Launch of the Freedom of Expression & Civic Space Report On Tanzania And Uganda

23. On 22nd October 2022, on the margins of the 73rd Ordinary Session, held in Banjul, The Gambia, on the invitation of the American Bar Association Rule of Law Institute in collaboration with the International Centre for Note-for Profit and Partners from Uganda and Tanzania, I attended and gave remarks at a Side Event on the Launch of a regional report on civic space in both Uganda and Tanzania.

 

24. The meeting gave an opportunity to participants to share the findings of the regional report and engage participants on the emerging practices, trends, lessons and opportunities to address challenges on freedom of expression and general civic space in Uganda and Tanzania. 

G. Panel on the African Union Theme of the Year: Year of Nutrition, Strengthening Resilience in Nutrition and Food Security on the African Continent

25. On 23rd October 2022, during the 73rd Ordinary Session, which took place from 20 October to 9 November 2022, in Banjul, the Gambia, as Chairperson of the Working Group on ECOSOC in Africa, I organized a Panel on the African Union Theme of The Year: Year of Nutrition, Strengthening Resilience in Nutrition and Food Security on the African Continent. 

 

26. The main objective of the Panel was to raise awareness on the Right to Food and Building Resilience in Nutrition amongst State Parties, National Human Rights Institutions (NHRIs), International Organizations, Civil Society Organizations (CSOs) (Non-Governmental Organizations (NGOs) and any other interested individuals as well as the general public.

 

H. Panel Launch of General Comment No. 7: State Obligations under the African Charter on Human and Peoples’ Rights in the Context of Private Provision of Social Services.

27. On 24th October 2022, during the ongoing 73rd Ordinary Session, as Chairperson of the Working Group ECOSOC in Africa, under the leadership of the Chairperson of the Commission and Members of the Commission, we organized a Panel Launch of General Comment No. 7: State Obligations under the African Charter in the Context of Private Provision of Social Services.  

 

28. The Commission adopted Resolution 434, on the Need to Develop Norms on States’ Obligations to Regulate Private Actors in the Provision of Social Services, which mandated the Working Group on ECOSOC to develop norms, or ‘soft law standards’, including general comments and other instruments that define State obligations in this domain. The Working Group on ECOSOC therefore developed General Comment No. 7: State Obligations under the African Charter in the Context of Private Provision of Social Services, which was adopted by the Commission at its 72nd Ordinary Session held virtually from 19th July to 2nd August 2022, and was launched at the present 73rd Ordinary Session.

 

29.The main objective is to officially launch the General Comment and create awareness on its existence and content amongst State Parties, CSOs, NHRIs, and any other interested individuals. It is our fervent wish that the General Comment would be widely known and used by various Stakeholders.

PART III: ACTIVITIES UNDERTAKEN IN MY CAPACITY AS A COMMITTEE ON THE PROTECTION OF THE RIGHTS OF PEOPLE LIVING WITH HIV (PLHIV) AND THOSE AT RISK, VULNERABLE TO AND AFFECTED BY HIV (THE COMMITTEE)

A. Second Continental Conference on the Impact of COVID-19 on HIV Responses in Africa

30. From 30th June to 2nd July 2022, as a Member of the Committee on PLHIV, I participated in the Second Continental Conference on the Impact of COVID-19 on HIV Responses in Africa held in Windhoek, Namibia.  The Second Conference, which was part of the promotion mandate of the Commission, was organized within the framework of Article 45 of the African Charter and was funded by the EU under the EU/AGA Support Project 2021-2023. The First Continental Conference under the same theme was held from 15 to 17 March 2022 in Saly, Senegal, and was reported during the 71st Ordinary Session of the Commission. 

 

31.  The Continental Conference was organized to raise awareness and build knowledge and capacity on the importance of a human rights-based approach in responding to the COVID-19 pandemic and its significance for the protection of HIV-related human rights. The conference also sought to draw out lessons learnt from the HIV responses in order to contribute to ongoing conversations on building resilience against future pandemics and other global health and development challenges.

 

32.  The Participants brought together various stakeholders including Honourable Commissioners, Expert Members of the Committee, Member States, representatives of International Organisations, local participants from the Namibian (Host) Government, NGOs, Medical Practitioners and other stakeholders. The Conference adopted a Declaration known as the “Windhoek Declaration” and can be accessed on the Commission’s website on https://www.achpr.org/news/viewdetail?id=234 

PART IV: ACTIVITIES UNDERTAKEN IN MY CAPACITY AS A MEMBER OF THE WORKING GROUP ON THE RIGHTS OF OLDER PERSONS AND PERSONS WITH DISABILITIES

A. Advocacy Visit to the Minister of Employment and Social Protection of Côte d’Ivoire 

33. On 11th August 2022, on the margins of the Workshop on the Initial Report on the Situation of the Rights of Older Persons and Persons with Disabilities in Africa, held from 11th to 12th August 2022, in Abidjan, Côte d’Ivoire, as Vice Chairperson of the Working Group on the Rights of Older Persons and Persons with Disabilities (WGOPPD), together with Honourable Commissioner Maire Louise Abomo, Chairperson of the WGOPPD and  Honourable Commissioner Idrissa Sow, Member of the WGOPPD, we were granted an audience with Honourable Adama Kamara, Minister of Employment and Social Protection of Côte d’Ivoire.  

34. The delegation of the Commission informed the Honourable Minister of, among other things, the Commission’s desire to hold an Ordinary Session in the Republic of Côte d’Ivoire and also advocated for the ratification by the Republic of Côte d’Ivoire of the Protocol to the Africa Charter on the Rights of Older Persons and Protocol to the African Charter on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities in Africa.  The Minister acknowledged our requests and promised to discuss it with the relevant authorities.

 

B. Workshop on the Initial Report on the Situation of the Rights of Older Persons and Persons with Disabilities in Africa

35. From 11th to 12th August 2022, I participated in the Workshop on the Initial Report on the Situation of the Rights of Older Persons and Persons with Disabilities in Africa, organised by the WGOPPD, in Abidjan, Côte d’Ivoire. 

 

36. The workshop was organised as part of efforts to produce bi-annual reports on the situation of the rights of older persons and persons with disabilities in Africa, with the objectives to effectively commence the drafting of the Initial Report and identify specific action items and related timelines.

 

37. The Workshop was attended by Honourable Commissioners, Expert Members of the Working Group; Experts working in the field of the rights of older persons and persons with disabilities and assisted by the Staff of the Secretariat of the Commission.  An Initial Report on the Situation of the Rights of Older Persons and Persons with Disabilities in Africa is now available, and will be used to advocate for identified good practices to be replicated.  

 

C. Meeting of the Working Group on Older Persons and Persons with Disabilities in Africa 

38. On 19th September 2022, I participated in the meeting of the WGOPPD held virtually, to introduce and orient the newly appointed Expert Members of the WGOPPD.   During this meeting, the newly appointed Expert Members were briefed on the mandates of the Commission and the WGOPPD, to familiarise themselves with their new roles and responsibilities.   The Working Group also adopted its draft 2023 Work

 

D. Launch Webinar of the Report on the Impact of Covid-19 on Older Women in Southern Africa
 
39.  The Centre for Human Rights of the Uninversity of Pretoria conducted a study that interrogated the state measures and policies adopted in selected countries i.e., South Africa, Zimbabwe, Lesotho, Malawi and Zambia with a view of establishing whether older women were considered and targeted in the adoption Covid-19 related measures and policies as part of the marginalised and vulnerable members of the society in need of protection.

 

40. The report relating to the said study was launched during a webinar that was held on the 3rd October 2022.  The purpose of the webinar was to share the study’s findings and gain input from a wide range of actors, from the WGOPPD to researchers and CSOs. 

 

41. On behalf of the Chairperson of the WGOPPD, I officially opened and closed the webinar. 

PART V: COUNTRY MONITORING: LETTERS OF URGENT APPEAL & COMMENDATION

42. In accordance with the Commission’s mandate under Article 45 of the African Charter, the Commission has an important role in the implementation, monitoring and assessment in respect for the provisions of the African Charter. In this regard, Members of the Commission have responsibility to monitor the situation of human rights in countries and address concerns as appropriate. In doing so, State Parties and other stakeholders are encouraged “to cooperate and consult the Country Rapporteurs of the Commission in the design, planning, implementation and review of Human Rights mandate in their country.”

 

43. In line with my mandate, I monitor the situation of human rights as Country Rapporteur in the following five (5) State Parties to the African Charter, namely: Federal Democratic Republic of Ethiopia; Republic of Ghana; Republic of Liberia, Republic of Malawi, Republic of Rwanda and Republic of Uganda.

 

44. During the intersession period therefore, human rights concerns were brought to my attention of which I issued the following Letters of Urgent Appeal and Commendation:

 

A. Letter of Urgent Appeal to the Federal Democratic Republic of Ethiopia

45. On 2nd June 2022, as the Country Rapporteur on the Human Rights situation in the Federal Democratic Republic of Ethiopia, together with the Special Rapporteur on Freedom of Expression and Access to Information in Africa, Hon. Commissioner Ourveena Geereesha Topsy Sonoo, we sent a letter of Urgent Appeal to H.E Mr. Abiy Ahmed, Prime Minister of the Federal Democratic Republic of Ethiopia, regarding allegations of the arrest of journalists and media workers working for Nisir International Corporation and Ashara, and both YouTube Channels in Ethiopia’s northern Amhara region, by security forces and local police. Reportedly, the arrests occurred during a raid on the offices of the two media outlets in May 2022, during which the police did not show a warrant and confiscated office equipment, including laptops and external hard drives.

 

46. Additional reports indicate that a number of journalists have been detained in a prison in Bahir Dar, others are believed to be held in the town of Gayint, whereas the journalists and media workers from Ashara media outlet who were arrested at their studio in Bahir Dar were being held in a detention centre outside of the city.

 

47. In view of the concerns expressed and reaffirming the rights and freedoms enshrined in the African Charter, we respectfully urged the Federal Democratic Republic of Ethiopia to:

 i. provide clarification regarding the arrest and detention of journalists and media workers who work for Nisir International Corporation and Ashara, both   Youtube Channels in Ethiopia, in addition to the allegations of confiscated office equipment from the media houses;
 ii. carry out independent and impartial investigations into the allegations concerning these arrests and detention without warrants;
 iii. reaffirm the indispensable role of the media as the fourth estate, in particular, by taking all necessary measures to provide journalists and other media   practitioners with an environment that is conducive to free expression without undue interference or fear of reprisal, from State and non-State actors;  and
 iv. inform the Commission of the steps it has taken or intends to take in fulfilment of its obligations with respect to the concerns raised in this letter. 

48. The Commission is yet to receive a response from the Government of the Federal Democratic Republic of Ethiopia.

SECTION III: SITUATIONAL ANALYSIS

PART I – Situation of ECOSOC Rights on the Continent

49. In many African countries ECOSOC rights are in need of persistent advocacy and action as they are mostly neglected and often categorised as non-justiciable.

 

50. Human beings should have access to social and economic goods and services needed to live a dignified life and to participate equally in society. This depends on having quality, accessible public services such as health care, water and sanitation, food and nutrition, housing, education, and social security. Governments have an obligation to ensure the right to an adequate standard of living, so that everyone enjoys the rights necessary to live in dignity. Consequently, Governments need to ensure equal access to these rights for all, without discrimination.

 

51. High unemployment and low incomes, high poverty rates, poor standards of education, have been at the centre of many of the socio-economic development challenges of Africa. 

 

52. The Covid -19 pandemic (the pandemic) has had a considerable impact on economic, social and cultural rights and created economic inequalities, particularly in developing countries. As the pandemic has eased down even though not yet over, its impact has been extremely challenging for Africa and the world at large, in particular on health and social protection systems. While Africa is recovery from the impact of the pandemic and the drive on vaccine production and roll out is still ongoing but in, Africa has been disrupted by the War in Ukraine. The War has adversely impacted all economies with the disruptions in trade of goods and services; inflation and the high rise in prices of commodities, food and fuel, amongst others. A combination of the war in Ukraine and the Covid-19 pandemic therefore has significantly affected Africa’s economic progression.  

 

53. Africa has also been hit by the impact of climate change with devastating flooding in most countries in the recent months such as in The Gambia, Nigeria, Sudan, Senegal, Democratic Republic of Congo, Uganda and South Africa amongst others. The floods have taken a significant toll on human lives, property, land, and livestock. Thousands of people have been left homeless and displaced, many others lost their lives and many more injured. Access to clean water and adequate sanitation in communities have been a major challenge, in addition to the outbreak of water borne diseases such as cholera in some countries.

 

54. While some countries experienced flooding this year, some countries in East Africa (northern Kenya, Ethiopia and Somalia) have been experiencing severe drought, after fourth season of failed rains, causing one of the worst droughts East Africa has ever seen. Reports indicate countless cases of malnutrition resulting in death of humans and livestock and millions of people face extreme hunger with imminent risk of dying. Climate change again has been cited as one of the major causes of the drought. Although Africa is the continent that contributes the least to the earth’s environmental change, it is the most vulnerable to climate change due to its low adaptive capacity. The impact of climate change threatens the continent’s public health and socio-economic development. States therefore need to develop better disaster response mechanisms and advocate for climate justice.

 

55. On a more positive note, following the adoption of the Additional Protocol to the African Charter on Human and Peoples' Rights on the Rights of Citizens to Social Protection and Social Security (the Protocol) by the African Union Heads of State and Government, in February 2022, I am pleased to state that the Republic of Niger has become the first country to sign the Protocol on 27th May 2022. While commending Niger, I would also like to encourage Niger to ratify the protocol and be the champion for the Protocol. In the same vein, with the vast majority of people in Africa not appropriately covered by formal social protection provisions, I would also like to urge all States to sign and ratify the newly adopted Protocol, to guarantee the rights of all Africans to social protection and social security. 

 

56. In relation to social protection and services, as mentioned earlier in my activities above, the Commission has launched General Comment No. 7: State obligations under the African Charter on Human and Peoples’ Rights in the context of private provision of social services. The General Comment outlines States’ obligations to respect, protect, promote and fulfil all human rights, within their territories and extraterritorially as well as, addresses the duty incumbent on all private actors to respect human rights in their activities. I would like to take this opportunity to once again implore States to make use of this important soft law instrument to ensure quality and accessible social services to all. 

 

PART II. Conclusion & Recommendations

57. In light of the aforesaid , I wish to make the following recommendations to the various stakeholders: 

State Parties: 

i. take legislative and other measures for the full realization of economic, social and cultural rights in accordance with the African Charter;  
ii. sign and ratify the Additional Protocol to the African Charter on the Rights of Citizens to Social Protection and Social Security;
iii. develop social protection programmes that ensure that every citizen has equal access to adequate, affordable and quality health care;
iv. regulate activities of non-state actors/private actors that provide socio- economic related services;
v. create employment opportunities in particular for the youth and invest in women and the youth;
vi. ensure access to housing and shelter by all including the most disadvantaged and vulnerable in society;
vii. ensure access to education for all, at every level of the education system;
viii. reform healthcare systems and provide access to health care including adequate and effective healthcare facilities and services for all;
ix. take measures and put in place access to water, sanitation and other basic health care necessities, as conditions for  safeguarding health and life of the public;
x. take measures to ensure the full enjoyment of the right to food including quality food that meets the requirement of nutrition standards;
xi. reset programmes, improve coordination and speed up vaccination drives, to ensure vaccines are administered as quickly as possible upon arrival, to avoid expired vaccines;
xii. ensure that testing and any treatment such as vaccines developed for Covid-19 are affordable and accessible to everyone, while also ensuring that hospitals and healthcare providers have adequate resources to provide care;
xiii. spearhead the drive to ensure Covid-19 vaccines are available, accessible, and that all Africans are vaccinated against Covid-19;
xiv. other forms of essential health care, including sexual and reproductive health care, also need to continue and remain physically and financially accessible throughout the pandemic;
xv. provide formal and informal businesses with financial support to weather the economic impacts of the Covid-19 pandemic;
xvi. ensure all national development plans including monitoring and evaluation mechanisms of such plans, are human rights driven and take into account their obligations under the African Charter, Agenda 2063 and the 2030 Sustainable Development Goals;
xvii. make use of the Commission’s Principles and Guidelines on Economic Social and Cultural Rights, the State Reporting Guidelines for  Economic, Social and Cultural Rights in the African Charter (the Tunis Reporting Guidelines); the Guidelines on the Right to Water in Africa; General Comment No 7: State obligations under the African Charter and in the context of private provision of social services and other regional and international human rights norms; and
xviii. authorize promotion missions by the Commission, in line with Article 45(1) of the African Charter.

Civil Society Organisations and other partners:

i. Continue to collaborate and support advocacy efforts at the national, sub-regional and continental levels to implement economic, social and cultural rights; and
ii. Provide support to the Working Group on Economic Social and Cultural Rights in Africa, to enable it to effectively implement its mandate. 

58. I would like to take this opportunity to extend my sincere gratitude to all the Members and Expert Members of the Working Group in the execution of our mandate. I would also like to extend profound appreciation to all our partners for the support and call for a continuous collaboration in promoting and protecting Economic, Social and Cultural Rights in Africa.