Equality Now

Project Description

African Women’s Rights Protection and Advancement

Republic of Burundi
Federal Democratic Republic of Ethiopia
Republic of Guinea
Republic of Sudan

Amount: € 342,403.00


The Equality Now project aimed to protect and advance women’s rights in Burundi, Ethiopia, Guinea, and Sudan by lobbying for the ratification of the African Union’s Maputo Protocol. It further aimed to employ a multi-sectoral framework to support the implementation of the Protocol and provide training based on the “Guide to Using the Protocol on the Rights of Women in Africa for Legal Action”. The project advocated the ratification of the Protocol on the Rights of Women in Africa and addressed human rights abuses suffered by adolescent girls.

Key Results

Although Burundi, Ethiopia and Sudan did not ratify the Protocol, significant progress was made in identifying impediments, engaging in advocacy and developing strategies to promote its ratification. The key result of project was the ratification of the Protocol in the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC), Guinea-Bissau and Zimbabwe, securing Sao Tome and Principe as a signatory and promoting the multi-sectoral framework for domestication and implementation of the Protocol in 16 African Union (AU) member states that had ratified the Protocol. Also, Guinea ratified and implemented the Protocol in 2012. A Guide to Using the Protocol on the Rights of Women in Africa for Legal Action was developed and 36 women lawyers empowered in the application of the Protocol.

In addition, senior government officials helped draft action plans, 230 rural women and community members from Burundi, Sudan and Ethiopia assisted in devising ratification strategies, 440 women were trained on the Protocol in Burundi, 5000 IEC awareness raising materials were distributed in Ethiopia, 4 radio shows were broadcast, 268 lawyers were trained on the use of the Protocol in litigating cases on human rights violations against women, and 3 cases in Sudan were  dismissed where women were charged with adultery.