The Working Group on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights in Africa of the African Commission on Human and Peoples’ Rights comprised of Honourable Commissioner Béchir Khalfallah, Vice-Chairperson of the African Commission on Human and Peoples’ Rights, Honourable Commissioner Maya Sahli Fadel and Mr Armand Tanoh, organised a regional workshop on the Right to Education for All in Algiers, Algeria, from 25 to 29 November 2013.
The workshop was attended by representatives of ministries of education, NGOs and unions working in the education sector from the following countries:
- Burkina Faso;
- Sahrawi Arab Democratic Republic;
- Senegal; and
The event was also attended by the UN Special Rapporteur on the Right to Education and representatives of UNICEF, UNDP and other inter-governmental organisations.
The workshop was conducted in two phases. During the first phase, held from 25 to 26 November 2013, the members of the Working Group were able to familiarise themselves with the Algerian educational system. As such, working sessions were held with Algerian education authorities, including the Minister of National Education, Mr Abdelatif Baba Ahmed, the Minister of Training and Vocational Education, Mr Noureddine Bedoui, the Minister of Religious Affairs and Wakfs, Mr Bouabdellah Ghlamallah, and the representative of the Minister of Higher Education and Scientific Research, Mr Boukraa Idris. The members of the Working Group also met with officials of the National Higher School of Political Science, Higher Teacher Training College, Ahmed Sahnoun Coranic School and the National Office for Educational Publications.
Following these working sessions, the Working Group noted that despite the challenges in the area of training of trainers, the Government of Algeria is committed to implementing its regional and international education obligations. The Working Group is also pleased to note that Algeria will successively meet the objectives of Education for All by 2015.
The second phase of the workshop focused on the educational systems of the countries represented. The workshop was opened by the Algerian Minister of Education, Mr Abdelatif Baba Ahmed.
During the three-day workshop, participants examined economic, social and cultural rights issues, in particular the right to education. Topics discussed included States’ obligations regarding the right to education and the right to education in the African human rights system.
The representatives of the nine countries at the workshop made presentations on their educational systems, highlighting the progress made, challenges and recommendations.
At the end of the workshop, participants commended the organisers for the quality of the experiences shared. They pledged to continue to work towards achieving the goals of Education for All and to implement the recommendations of the workshop for the post-2015 period.
Algiers, 29 November 2013