The Rights of Older People: One of The Most Neglected Areas in Advancing Human Rights in Africa

On this article from the African Centre for Democracy and Human Rights Studies, the authors highligh  that Africa continues making progress in human rights, but the rights of older people continue to be invisible within sustainable development, gender equality, protection of human rights and non-discrimination debates. The specific national mechanisms necessary for the protection of older people are lacking, and those that exist are poorly implemented, and suffer from weak coordination and accountability mechanisms. This is despite human rights being universal across the life course and remaining unchanged as the population grows older. Even with African Head of States in January 2016 adopting the African Charter on Human and People’s Rights on the Rights of Older Persons in Africa, none of the countries have ratified the Protocol and it needs 15 countries to ratify for it to enter in force. Further, the current priorities and call for global and regional development community, has a focus on addressing the needs and rights of people of all ages to ensure dignity and prosperity for all through commitments on equality and non-discrimination, human rights and ‘Leave no one behind” by reaching the farthest left behind first. But, minimal policy and programmatic interventions including financing by both government and development partners exist to realize these commitments.