The Africa Group is an independent group of senior African experts on international criminal law and human rights, including political figures, members of international and domestic tribunals, and human rights advocates that came together in November 2015 to strengthen justice and accountability in Africa.
The Africa Group for Justice and Accountability supports efforts to strengthen justice and accountability measures in Africa through domestic and regional capacity building, advice and outreach, and enhancing cooperation between Africa and the International Criminal Court.
Africa has been an important player in the global struggle for the rule of law and fighting impunity.
For example, African states played an indispensable role in the establishment and functioning of the International Criminal Court (ICC). In recent years, however, the relationship between African states, the African Union and the ICC has become strained as a result of conflicting perceptions about the Court’s role and broader justice and accountability measures in Africa.
To date, there has been no systematic effort to identify and develop means to overcome such challenges or to engage with the diverse concerns of African states.
The Africa Group came together in November 2015 to advance justice and accountability measures in Africa and focus on contentious issues such as the current ICC-Africa relationship. The Africa Group also aims to strengthen local accountability measures such as commissions of inquiry, domestic crime units for international crimes, and hybrid mechanisms.
The Africa Group meets on a regular basis across the continent and engages politicians, members of the judiciary, the media, students, and interested citizens.
The Wayamo Foundation is the group’s secretariat and convener.
The Kilimanjaro Principles on International Justice and Accountability were first agreed to at the AGJA’s strategic meeting in Arusha, Tanzania on 17 October 2016.
The Africa Group for Justice and Accountability will:
- Champion Justice and Accountability
Promote efforts to ensure justice and accountability for perpetrators of international crimes.
- Enhance Complementarity by Building Capacity
Enhance complementarity by providing expertise, promoting the establishment and strengthening of effective domestic and regional justice mechanisms.
- Support the International Criminal Court and Universal Ratification of the Rome Statute
Encourage a positive and cooperative relationship between African states and the International Criminal Court as well as advocate universal ratification of the Rome Statute.
- Promote Facilitation, Mediation and International Cooperation
Support international cooperation and offer independent expert advice, facilitation and mediation to African states, the African Union, the International Criminal Court, and the international community.
- Foster Transparency and Open Dialogue
Foster open, transparent dialogue on the role and impact of international justice in Africa, provide open forums where African states, citizens and organisations can discuss African and global perspectives on justice and accountability.