A critique of the jurisprudence of the African commission regarding evidence in relation to human rights violations: A need for reform?
Nanima, Robert Doya
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The success of any human rights system at the domestic, regional or international level requires an adequate development of the normative, institutional and jurisprudential frameworks. With regard to the African Commission, its approach on the normative and jurisprudential framework on evidence obtained through human rights violations is critiqued. The study is guided by three research questions on the African Commission’s normative and jurisprudential framework, and interrogates the need for improvement. While other human rights bodies like the European Court of Human Rights and the Human Rights Committee have developed jurisprudence, their experiences can only be useful to Africa where they are subjected to a framework that speaks to an accused, in Africa in light of his or her peculiar situation. An evaluation of the African Commission’s mode of dealing with evidence obtained through human rights violations, followed by an evaluation of the mode engaged by other human rights bodies offers a platform to selectively, and with necessary adoption recommend a framework that the Africa Commission can use to improve its jurisprudence. In this regard, the study draws on the experiences of other human rights bodies to aid, the development of a framework to improve the jurisprudence of the African Commission. The study situates theoretical underpinnings that inform the decisions of the African Commission, the European Court of Human Rights and the Human Rights Committee. This is followed by an evaluation of the normative and jurisprudential frameworks of the three human rights bodies. The study proposes a framework based on a victim-centred approach to improve the jurisprudence of the African Commission on evidence obtained through human rights violations.
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