Resolution on accessibility for persons with disabilities - ACHPR/Res.305(EXT.OS/XVIII)2015


The African Commission on Human and Peoples’ Rights, meeting at its 18th Extraordinary Session held from 29 July to 7 August 2015 in Nairobi, Republic of Kenya:

Recalling its mandate to promote and protect human and peoples’ rights pursuant to the African Charter on Human and Peoples’ Rights (the African Charter);

Reaffirming Article 2 of the African Charter on the entitlement of every individual to enjoy the rights and freedoms recognised in the African Charter without distinction of any kind;

Reaffirming Article 18 (4) of the African Charter which provides persons with disabilities with the right to special measures of protection;

Further reaffirming Article 13 (3) of the African Charter on the Rights and Welfare of the Child which stipulates that States shall use their available resources with a view to achieving progressively the full convenience of the mentally and physically disabled person to movement and access to public highway buildings and other places to which the disabled may legitimately want to have access to;

Considering Article 23 of the Protocol to the African Charter on Human and Peoples’ Rights on the Rights of Women in Africa which provides women with disabilities with the right to special protection to facilitate their access to employment, professional and vocational training and their participation in decision-making;

Recalling the Continental Plan of Action for the African Decade of Persons with Disabilities (2010-2019) which underscores the importance of ensuring equality of opportunities for persons with disabilities, and requires that the inclusion of persons with disabilities in all spheres of life be guaranteed;

Noting that accessibility is one of the core principles established in the United Nations Convention on The Rights of Persons with Disabilities;

Gravely concerned that facilities and services across all spheres of life remain grossly inaccessible to persons with disabilities, thereby undermining their full and equal participation in society;

Recognising the importance of enabling persons with disabilities to live independently and participate fully in all aspects of life;

The Commission:

  1. Calls on States Partiesthe African Union and its Organs to take immediate and effective measures to ensure that all facilities and services open or provided to the public are accessible to persons with disabilities
  2. In particular, calls on States Parties, the African Union and its Organs to ensure that meetings in which the public participate are held in places accessible to persons with disabilities;
  3. Urges States Partiesthe African Union and its Organs to ensure that all information intended for the general public is disseminated in accessible formats and technologies appropriate to different kinds of disabilities;
  4. Urges those States Parties that have not done so to ratify the Marrakesh Treaty to Facilitate Access to Published Works for Persons Who Are Blind, Visually Impaired or Otherwise Print Disabled;
  5. Calls on States Parties, the African Union and its Organs to recognise and promote the use of  sign language at the national, sub-regional and continental levels; and
  6. Requests the Working Group on Older Persons and People with Disabilities in Africa to remain seized of this matter and to provide any further advice or guidance as it may deem appropriate.

Adopted on 7 August 2015 during the 18th Extraordinary Session held in Nairobi, Republic of Kenya