[Oxfam]Under the title "The Power of People against Poverty", Oxfam has adopted a new strategic plan that shifts the focus of its work onto the empowerment of people to shape their own future free from poverty.
[AI London]A recent one-year prison sentence handed down against a prominent opposition activist in Egypt is the latest attempt by the government to silence criticism, Amnesty International said today while calling for the conviction to be quashed and for him to be released.
[HRW]Dar es Salaam -Tanzanians who are most at risk of HIV face widespread police abuse and often can't get help when they are victims of crime, Human Rights Watch and the Wake Up and Step Forward Coalition (WASO) said in a report released today.
[Informer]The Rural Human Rights Activists Programme (RHRAP) has successfully ended a two-day psycho-socio, Trauma Healing and Conflict Management Workshop for inmates at the Gbarnga Central Prison in Bong County. The workshop was held from June 6-7, 2013.
[Pambazuka]A coalition of civil society organizations fighting for realization of the right to health in Uganda issued the following statement in reaction to President Museveni's State of the Nation Address:
[Daily Trust]Mrs Veronica Umaru is the National Coordinator of Women Trafficking and Child Labour Eradication Foundation (WOTCLEF). In this interview, she explains the effect of child labour and employing underage children in the home. Excerpts.
[AI London]Yesterday's prison sentences against three activists from FEMEN, an international women's movement known for staging topless protests, in Tunisia are an unacceptable restriction on freedom of expression, Amnesty International said today.
[Sabahi]The Danish Refugee Council (DRC) announced Monday (June 10th) the launch of a scholarship programme for Somalis in Kenya's Dadaab refugee camp complex, providing educational opportunities for youth and vocational training for adults.
Climate litigation is in its infancy in India. Climate-related claims have yet to be litigated in the courts. There are a few cases in which climate change has been referred to but only in passing. This report argues that the situation may well be set to change. Climate change and its impacts are rapidly capturing the popular imagination in India. There is a growing recognition of the importance and urgency of the issue and multiple climate policies and initiatives have been launched in response. Moreover, India has an engaged and proactive civil society, an activist judiciary, a progressive body of enviro-legal jurisprudence and an unparalleled culture of public interest litigation. This suggests not just that there are potential litigants waiting in the wings, but also that climate-related claims are likely to be favourably entertained by the judiciary.
Within the development field, tax administration reform is an area of relative success. Over the past two decades, the national revenue systems of most countries in anglophone Africa have undergone major reforms. These comprise, in particular, the introduction of Value Added Tax (VAT), the adoption of ‘advanced’ tax administration practices, and the creation of semiautonomous revenue authorities. What do these reforms imply for emerging patterns of politics and governance in anglophone Africa?
Considering this question this paper offers a number of conclusions:
The impact of these reforms has been shaped by the broad context within which they were being implemented, especially the increasingly transnational character of many important policymaking relationships. Senior African revenue staff feature increasingly in transnational expert networks, and face a wider range of employment opportunities, public and private, both at home and abroad
These revenue reforms have contributed only modestly to statebuilding - actual revenue collection has not increased much; improvements in organisational capacity have been concentrated at national and capital city level; pand some anticipated spillover benefits from improving the revenue collection apparatus have not been realised
While these reforms have made it possible for governments to raise revenue from the private sector in a more ‘institutionalised, rule-bound' manner, they have also increased the possibility that the taxation system will be shaped by private sector interests, making it difficult for governments to raise the revenue that they claim they need.
Although Kenya has budgeted Sh8 billion for free maternity and prenatal care to mothers giving birth in public health institutions, the country must do more to arrest the high number of maternal and prenatal fatalities.
Newly appointed Health Secretary James Macharia inspected the largest maternal hospital in East and Central Africa at Pumwani to deliver…
[AI London]President Goodluck Jonathan of Nigeria should not sign into law a draconian new bill that would formalize discrimination against lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and intersex (LGBTI) people and have wide-ranging effects on civil liberties in the country, 10 Nigerian and international human rights groups said today.
This 68-page report is based on interviews with 101 refugees, asylum seekers, and Kenyans of Somali ethnicity. The report aims to document how police used grenade and other attacks by unknown people in Nairobi’s mainly Somali suburb of Eastleigh and a government order to relocate urban refugees to refugee camps as an excuse to rape, beat, extort money from, and arbitrarily detain, at least 1,000 people. The police described their victims as “terrorists,” and demanded payments to free them.
This tension – between Norwegian selfinterests on the one hand and the question of poverty reduction and social development for the world’s poor on the other - lies at the heart of this report. Nigeria is a very interesting case in this regard: While the country faces enormous challenges in terms of poverty and underdevelopment, it also represents a very interesting market for an increasingly globalised Norwegian export industry, particularly in the field of off-shore energy services.
[HRW]Johannesburg -Angolan authorities forcibly broke up a peaceful protest on May 27, 2013, denouncing the enforced disappearance of two activists a year ago, Human Rights Watch said today. Human Rights Watch also expressed concern at the lack of a credible investigation into the disappearances.
Rural finance has the potential to help poor people out of poverty, and Latin America has met that challenge in some unique ways.This Brief by discusses impacts of microfinance’s in rural areas, presenting evidence on rural poverty as well as on microfinance’s positive effects on consumption and investment in education. It then describes the evolution of rural microfinance in Latin America, before presenting some key Latin American experiences that aim to increase rural peoples’ access, not only to credit, but to a range of financial services and products. The author provides a view on adaptations to credit technology used in urban areas for application in rural finance, and emphasises the importance of risk management in order to expand outreach.
rural areas need financial services for all types of economic activities, and these services should encompass more than credit. Latin America has shown that this is possible, in part with proper risk management strategies
economies of scale and scope achieved by larger MFIs allow for better diversification of risk so that agricultural lending can be amplified. This likely indicates that prioritising growth and the diversification of these institutions should be an important task for governments and donors providing support for the sector
[HRW]New York -The draft Associations Law that Egypt's president put before the country's legislature on May 29, 2013, would allow the government and its security agencies to arbitrarily restrict the funding and operation of independent groups if it is adopted in its present form, Human Rights Watch said today.
Over 6.5 million people were newly displaced inside their home countries in 2012, almost twice as many as the year before. Because these people have not crossed a border, they are not refugees and do not benefit from international protection.
Much of the spike in the number of internally displaced people worldwide was due to the 2.4 million people displaced by the crisis within Syria by the end of 2012,’’ said Kate Halff, Director of IDMC. ‘‘Here, the acceleration of internal displacement is closely linked to the conflict, creating a ‘snowball effect’. In this context, internal displacement becomes a ‘moving target’ for those tasked with the response.”
Until the conflict in Syria is resolved, internal displacement will continue to accelerate. This phenomenon has been witnessed in other countries with protracted, on-going conflicts. These include Colombia, which continues to host the largest number of internally displaced people (IDPs) in the world, and the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC), which has the third largest IDP population behind Syria.
With 10.4 million IDPs reported in sub-Saharan Africa, this region hosts almost a third of the world’s total. In DRC, 1 million were forced to flee their homes as a consequence of a major upsurge in violence in the eastern provinces. ‘‘Years of insecurity in DRC have depleted the coping ability of both IDPs and those who host them, having a profound and devastating impact on peoples’ lives,” says Halff. While DRC has the largest new displacement figures after Syria, a large portion of the 2.7 million IDPs are living in situations of protracted displacement.
The report suggests that while a resolution to the conflict, particularly in Syria, is critical to the stabilisation of the internal displacement crisis, it highlights the importance of bridging the gap between emergency response and development activities. “90% of the countries monitored by IDMC have IDPs living in protracted displacement, often for decades while second and third generations are born into displacement,’’ says Halff. ‘‘Governments are responsible for finding long-term solutions for their displaced citizens. However, these can only be realised when governments and the international community recognise that people forced from their homes require not only a humanitarian response at the height of a crisis, but sustained engagement until a lasting solution is achieved.
The displacement of people by the risk and impact of
disasters is a concern for policymakers in both rich and
poor countries worldwide. Since 2009, the Norwegian
Refugee Council’s Internal Displacement Monitoring
Centre (IDMC) has been providing global estimates of the
number of people displaced each year to inform policy and
measures by governments and other humanitarian and
development actors that address the risk of displacement
and ensure vulnerable displaced people are protected.
This year’s report presents new findings for displacement
during 2012 and analysis drawn from five years of data
compiled by IDMC. As with previous years, estimates were
determined by collecting, cross-checking and analysing
secondary data from an expanding range of sources related
to rapid-onset weather-related and geophysical hazard
events. Statistical data is complemented by research on
specific countries, situations and types of disasters.
[ThinkAfricaPress]On 5 April this year, the countdown began for the final 1,000 days of the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs), the most ambitious group of targets ever set to reduce global poverty. Launched in September 2000, the MDGs encompass a range of aims including halving global poverty, reducing child mortality by two-thirds, combating HIV/AIDS and malaria, and achieving universal primary education. Now, with the 2015 deadline fast approaching, the global community must focus on measuring the progress to date and h
Human rights have played a key role in ending dictatorships in Latin America, inspiring democracy, fostering social justice and generating a more empowered and active citizenship.
This guide highlights the key policies and practices that have made these advances possible. It explores the ways that states have implemented concrete legislative and public policy actions at the national and regional level to meet their obligations to protect and defend human rights. It then goes on to highlight the impact of the activism of a vibrant civil society in using these mechanisms to promote and guarantee the realisation of human rights, and in creating oversight mechanisms to monitor states’ compliance with their human rights obligations.