The African Commission on Human and Peoples’ Rights (the Commission) continues to follow closely the deteriorating human rights situation in the Republic of The Sudan, State Party to the African Charter on Human and Peoples’ Rights (the African Charter).
The Commission’s Special Rapporteur on Human Rights Defenders in Africa, Hon. Commissioner Reine Alapini-Gansou, is deeply concerned by the deteriorating human rights situation in the Republic of The Sudan, in particular: the constant harassment of human right defenders by the Sudanese National Intelligence and Security services (NISS); the arbitrary arrest and detention in secret places by the NISS; and the inhumane treatment meted on human right defenders when arrested and detained.
The Special Rapporteur has received reports of the alleged arbitrary arrest and detention in an unknown location of Dr Wudawi Ibrahim Adam and his driver Mr Adam El-Sheikh by the NISS, and of Mr Akram Ahmed who has been repeated summoned and held by the NISS.
The Special Rapporteur notes that the constant arrests and detention of human rights defenders by security forces of the Republic of The Sudan is a tactic used by the Sudanese authorities to obstruct the work of human right defenders and activist, in their promotion and protection of human rights.
The Special Rapporteur recalls particularly the cases of Dr Wudawi Ibrahim Adam and Mr. Akram Ahmed who have severally suffered numerous arrests and detentions and have been subjected to inhumane treatments while in detention.
The Special Rapporteur condemns the suppression of the rights of human rights defenders and the reprisals meted upon human rights defenders and activist in the Republic of The Sudan, and calls on the Government of the Republic of The Sudan to:
- Provide clarification to the African Commission regarding the above-stated allegations of the arbitrary arrest of Dr Wudawi and his driver, the illegal search conducted on his property and their detention in an undisclosed location, and the repeated summoning and detention of Mr Akram Ahmed;
- Immediately release all human rights defenders arbitrarily arrested and to refrain from repeatedly summoning, questioning and detaining human rights defenders; including Dr Wudawi Ibrahim Adam and Mr. Akram Ahmed
- Take all necessary measures to guarantee the physical and psychological integrity and security of all human rights defenders in the Republic of The Sudan;
- Guarantee in all circumstances that all human rights defenders in the Republic of The Sudan are able to carry out their legitimate human rights activities without fear of reprisals and free of all restrictions;
- Uphold its obligations under regional and international human rights law, including by refraining from undue interference and suppression of the rights of human rights defenders.
The Special Rapporteur would like to remind the Sudanese authorities of their obligations to guarantee fundamental rights, including: the right on equality before the law and equal protection of the law; the right to dignity and integrity of the person; the right to be free from all form of inhumane and degrading treatment/punishment; the right to liberty and security of the person and to be protected from arbitrary arrests and detention; the rights to freedom of association, assembly and expression; as enshrined in Articles 3, 4, 5, 6, 9, 10 and 11 of the African Charter.
The Special Rapporteur continues to monitor developments on the situation of human rights defenders in the Republic of The Sudan and calls on the African Union and the international community to contribute towards the effective realization of human and peoples’ rights in the Republic of The Sudan as a whole.
Done in Banjul-The Gambia, 13 December 2016
Honourable Commissioner Reine Alapini-Gansou
Special Rapporteur on Human Rights Defenders in Africa