Recalling its mandate to promote human and peoples' rights and ensure their protection in Africa under the African Charter on Human and Peoples' Rights (the African Charter);
Recalling its Resolution of 30 May 2007 on the Rights of Older Persons in Africa, adopted at its 41st Ordinary Session held from 16-30 May 2007, in Accra Ghana;
Bearing in mind the African Union Policy Framework and Plan of Action on Ageing in which it is recommended that "Member States recognize the fundamental rights of older persons and commit themselves to abolish all forms of discrimination based on age," and "that they undertake to ensure that the rights of older persons are protected by appropriate legislation, including the right to organize themselves in groups and the right to representation in order to advance their interest";
Considering Article 18(4) of the African Charter on Human and Peoples' Rights, which stipulates that "the aged and the disabled shall also have the right to special measures of protection in keeping with their physical or moral needs";
Recalling Article 22 of the Protocol to the African Charter on Human and Peoples' Rights on the Rights of Women in Africa which highlights the special protection and needs of older women in Africa;
Considering also paragraph 20 of the Kigali Declaration adopted at the First African Union Ministerial Conference on Human Rights in Africa which "calls upon State Parties to develop a Protocol on the Protection of the Rights of People with disabilities and the elderly";
Convinced that a Protocol to the African Charter on Human and Peoples' Rights on the rights of older persons in Africa, ratified by all African Union Member States, will enhance compliance of State Parties with the recommendations contained in the AU Policy Framework and Plan of Action on Ageing:
Decides to establish a Focal Point on the Rights of Elderly Persons in Africa; and to appoint Commissioner Yeung Kam John Yeung Sik Yuen as the coordinator of the Focal Point, to be assisted by Commissioner Reine Alapini-Gansou, with Mr. Yaser Ahmad El-Hassan as an Expert.
Further decides that the Focal Point shall be tasked with the following mandate:
- To liaise with the African Union Commission to convene an Experts Meeting composed of Members of the African Commission on Human and Peoples' Rights, Experts from the African Union Member States and civil society organizations, with a view to drafting a Protocol to the African Charter on the Rights of Older Persons in Africa, bearing in mind the recommendations in the 2002 Policy Framework;
- To follow up with the African Union Commission, with a view to securing the resources required to enable the elaboration of the said Protocol;
- To spearhead the process of drafting the Protocol for submission to the AU Policy Organs for, consideration and adoption as soon as possible.
Done in Brazzaville, the Republic of Congo, 28 November 2007.