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23 Nov 2015

African CSOs on a Binding Treaty

African civil society groups seeking treaty to "stop corporate abuse and provide real remedies for affected people"

"African Civil Society Seeking a Treaty to Stop Corporate Abuse and Provide Real Remedies for Affected People"

Africa remains the site of some of the most egregious corporate-related human rights abuses. A treaty provides a promising pathway towards the construction of the next generation of binding international standards and mechanisms that can contribute to empowering Africans to engage in forms of development that respect human rights, while ensuring protection against corporate abuses and providing a multi-layered effective remedy system for the women, children, indigenous peoples and other affected communities across the African continent.

As cases in all corners of Africa have illustrated, communities are all too often excluded from the processes that decide how domestic and international corporate investment projects are designed and operated, and when they cause human rights impacts those affected are all too often left without any meaningful remedy. Instead those impacted often find themselves marginalized and criminalized by state and corporate authorities in the process of seeking the realization of their human rights. A treaty holds some promise of beginning to redress these imbalances...

African civil society organisations, together with our colleagues in other regions, must be central to the process of designing and implementing the treaty if it is to be an effective instrument...