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African Commission on Human and Peoples' Rights

Relationship between the Court and the Commission

The relationship between the Court and the Commission is governed by the Protocol establishing the Court, Rule 29 of the Court’s Interim Rules of Procedure 2010 and Part IV of the Rules of Procedures of the Commission 2010. These instruments set out the relationship of the Court with the Commission as follows:

  • The Court complements the protective mandate of the Commission in the promotion and protection of human rights.
  • The Court may transfer a matter of which it is seized to the Commission.
  • Whenever the Court decides a case, its judgment shall be transmitted to the Commission in addition to the parties concerned.
  • The Commission may of its own accord submit a communication to the Court in respect of massive violations of human rights.
  • The Commission may at any stage of the consideration of a communication, seize the Court with the examination of a communication.
  • The Commission can submit communications to the Court on grounds of failure or unwillingness of a state to comply with its decisions or provisional measures.
  • Whenever the Commission is requested to interpret any provision of the Charter, it shall inform the President of the Court and a copy of the Commission’s interpretation should be sent to the President of the Court as soon as it has been adopted by the Commission.
  • The Court may request the opinion from the Commission when deciding on issues of admissibility.
  • The Court can give advisory opinion upon request by the Commission.
  • In drawing up its own rules, the Court is required to consult with the Commission as appropriate.
  • The Commission and the Court must meet at least once a year or whenever it is necessary in order to guarantee a good working relationship between both institutions.
  • The Bureau of the Commission must meet with the Bureau of the Court as often as necessary to undertake any function that may be assigned to them by both institutions.