African Governments must stop forced evictions – Amnesty International

Amnesty International (AI), a global human rights advocacy movement, on Wednesday called on African Governments and local government authorities to stop forced evictions and respect housing rights

Every year in African cities, thousands of families are thrown out of their homes by authorities or others without human rights safeguards and these forced evictions affect their lives.

AI made the call during a campaign launch in Accra on the theme, “Stop Forced Evictions in Africa”, to create awareness among the public on forced eviction as a form of human right violation.

Mr Lawrence Amesu, Director of Amnesty International, said the objective of the campaign was to remind Housing Ministers and Governments to propose a declaration on adequate housing to the African Union that was human right-based and prohibit forced evictions.

He said AI had designated a Week of Action to end forced eviction which would unite thousands of some the world’s poorest and most disadvantaged people to demand from their governments respect for their human rights without forcibly evicting them from their homes and provide them with better services such as clean water and schools.

Mr Amesu said African housing ministers were meeting for the fourth session of the African Ministerial Conference on Housing and Urban Development (AMCHUD) in Nairobi from March 20 – 23 on the theme “Territorial Planning and Access to Basic Services For All”.

He said to ensure that the voices of civil society and slum dwellers were heard, AI had invited informal settlement residents from Kenya, Nigeria, Ghana and Zimbabwe to a ‘People Live Here’ public forum to be held on Thursday, March 22 March at the same venue as AMCHUD.

Mr Amesu explained that forced eviction was the removal of people against their will from their homes or land they had occupied without the provision of, or access to due process and other legal protections which was a violation of human rights and governments were obliged to prohibit and prevent them but often did not.

Source: GNA

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