The African Commission on Human and Peoples’ Rights (the Commission), meeting at its 24th Extra-Ordinary Session held in Banjul, The Gambia, from 30 July to 8 August 2018;
Recalling its mandate under the African Charter on Human and Peoples’ Rights (African Charter) to promote and protect human and peoples’ rights in Africa;
Considering Article 13(1) of the African Charter which stipulates that “every citizen shall have the right to participate freely in the government of his country, either directly or through freely chosen representatives in accordance with the provisions of the law”;
Recalling the obligation contained in the African Charter to take into consideration sub-regional, regional and international human rights instruments;
Mindful of the 2001 Declaration on the Principles Governing Democratic Elections in Africa which stipulates that “the holding of democratic elections constitutes an important dimension in the prevention, management and resolution of conflicts” and also the African Charter on Democracy, Elections and Governance;
Underscoring its previous Resolutions on Elections: Resolutions ACHPR/Res.164 (XLVII) 2010; ACHPR/Res.184 (EXT.OS/IX) 2011; ACHPR/Res.232 (EXT.OS/XIII) 2013; ACHPR/Res.239 (EXT.OS/XIV) 2013; ACHPR/Res.272 (LV) 2014; and ACHPR Res. ACHPR/Res.293 (EXT.OS/xvii) 2015, amongst others;
Expressing concern that, despite the number of Resolutions adopted by the Commission on Elections, the conduct of free and fair elections in some parts of the African continent remains a challenge;
Specifically noting the Legislative elections in Guinea-Bissau scheduled for 18 November 2018;
Noting the draft Stability Pact signed by key political and social stakeholders in Guinea-Bissau which inter alia calls for reform of the electoral law for the organization of legislative and local elections in 2018;
Further noting that the Stability Pact will serve as a basis for good governance in Guinea-Bissau following the elections;
Emphasizing the importance of the organization of peaceful, free, fair, and transparent elections to promote peace and security;
Reaffirming its commitment to the development of democracy in Africa, and recognizing that the principles of good governance, transparency, and human rights are critical elements that contribute to the achievement of peace and sustainable development in Africa;
Noting the need for certain measures to be taken to prevent pre and post-elections violence and their detrimental effect on democracy;
CALLS on the Government of the Republic of Guinea-Bissau to:
· Create conditions conducive for peaceful, free, fair, and transparent elections in the country;
· Expedite adoption of the Stability Pact which is at level of the National Assembly, so as to create the conditions for a peaceful election in the country in November 2018;
· Ensure that the electoral process adheres to international standards and norms;
· Ensure that all participating parties, in particular, the opposition parties, are allowed to conduct their campaigns freely without any violence and limitations;
· Ensure the involvement of women in the electoral process, and prevent violence against women throughout the electoral cycle;
· Uphold human-rights principles in electoral security.
Encourages the African Union, ECOWAS, and the international community to accompany and support the electoral process.
Further encourages the African Union and ECOWAS to deploy Observers in order to support and monitor the electoral process.
Done in Banjul, The Gambia, on 8 August 2018