AFRICA UNITES on HUMAN RIGHTS
The Kampala Convention is an historic milestone. The first of its kind in the world, the Kampala Convention, which came into force on 6th December 2012, is a continental instrument that binds governments to provide legal protection for the rights and well-being of those forced to flee inside their home countries due to conflict, violence, natural disasters, or development projects.
The Kampala Convention in Brief:
- Reaffirms that national authorities have the primary responsibility to provide assistance to internally displaced people (IDPs)
- Comprehensively addresses different causes of internal displacement: conflict, generalised violence, human-caused or natural disasters, and development projects, like building dams or clearing land for large-scale agriculture.
- Recognises the critical role that civil society organisations, and the communities which take them in, play in assisting IDPs and obliges governments to assess the needs and vulnerabilities of the forcibly displaced, and the host communities, in order to address the plight of people uprooted within their borders
- Was adopted by the African Union and currently legally binds 15 African countries to prevent displacement, assist those who have been forced to leave their homes, and find safe and sustainable solutions to help people to rebuild their lives.
- A total of 37 African countries have demonstrated their commitment to the convention by signing it, but are not yet legally obliged by its contents.
About Internal Displacement
40 per cent of the all the people worldwide who have been displaced within their own country as a result of conflict or violence live in Africa.
There are almost four times as many internally displaced people (IDPs) as there are refugees in Africa. Unlike refugees, IDPs do not have a special status under international law.
KC 2012: "Created by Africans, for Africans"