1. Introduction

A regional instrument that addressed the protection of displaced persons out of state borders was established in 1969 as a result of the dynamics of displacement on the continent in the period following decolonisation but no instrument was developed to address the protection of persons displaced within state borders.[1] In order to address this gap and provide internally displaced persons(IDPs) in Africa with adequate protection and assistance as a result of the detrimental effect of internal displacement on peace, security, environment and development of African countries, the African Union Convention for the Protection and Assistance of Internally Displaced Persons in Africa (Kampala Convention) was established.[2] The Kampala Convention was adopted on 23 October 2009 and entered into force on 6 December 2012. Following its adoption as a legally binding regional instrument, the Kampala Convention has become a significant framework. Excluding the preamble, the Kampala Convention has 23 articles. The preamble describes the principles upon which the Convention is established. It adopts in context international frameworks such as the United Nations (UN) Guiding Principles on Internal Displacement and applies it to the situation of internal displacement in Africa.[3] Setting forth the legal basis within the framework of the African Union and the United Nations, the preamble presents the intention of the Kampala Convention. The Kampala Convention aims to prevent internal displacement, protect IDPs, and provide durable solutions to internal displacement in the Africa.[4]           

  1. Challenges faced by IDPs in Africa

In the past, numerous African states have been subjected to internal displacement and many still do. Due to the number of IDPs in African countries as well as the awful circumstances facing a significant number of IDPs in the African region, internal displacement has become a pressing challenge.[5] Conflict and violence continue to be the major driving forces of displacement in a number of countries in sub-Saharan Africa.[6] Conflict and violence remain the main causes of displacement in the Democratic Republic of Congo(DRC).[7] Over 870,000 new migrations in the DRC in the first half of 2022 were attributed to armed conflict and intercommunal violence.[8]  Ethiopia continues to experience an increase in displacement with a high percentage of displacement caused by armed conflict.[9] The armed conflict that spread from the Tigray Regional state to the neighbouring Amhara and Afar regions in 2021, which resulted in an unstable and tense humanitarian situation, led to a sharp increase in internal displacement in Ethiopia.[10] Many African countries are also experiencing new waves of violence each year in addition to the ongoing violence already faced.[11] Some countries such as Ethiopia, Burkina Faso, Central African Republic, Mozambique, and the Democratic Republic of the Congo are experiencing new displacement resulting from conflict and natural disasters.[12] In Mozambique, following a recurrence of conflict in the provinces of Cabo Delgado and Niassa, an estimated 6,000 persons have been documented as newly displaced in 2022 alone.[13] Kenya, Somalia and Sudan have also seen an increase in displacement as a result of severe drought, food insecurity and conflict and violence.[14] By the end of May 2022, 2.4 million people had been displaced by Central Sahel crisis, with women and children making up more than half of this population.[15]

On the connection between disasters and internal displacement, research has become more prevalent.[16] The likelihood that climate change would worsen natural disasters is supported by a large body of evidence.[17] The negative effects of climate change have led to an increase in the frequency and severity of migration brought on by slow-onset events including droughts, desertification, deforestation, and water scarcity during the past few decades.[18] Due to the severe drought this year, more than 755,000 individuals in Somalia were internally displaced as of August 2022, increasing the total number of people affected by the drought since January 2021 when it started to one million.[19] African forced displacement is increasingly being caused by climate change.[20] In countries such as Mozambique, Somalia and Ethiopia the impact of climate change has worsened the displacement of people.[21] Mozambique continues to experience the rising effects of climate crisis, which are increasing vulnerability, causing displacement, and making life more difficult for internally displaced people, and host communities.[22] The World Bank’s New Groundswell Africa report predicts that the African region would be severely affected by climate change, with up to 86 million Africans expected to migrate within their own countries by 2050.[23]          

Internal displacement affects not only the lives of the affected people, families, and communities but also entire societies. The situation of IDPs in Africa is further compounded by the challenges they face in accessing their basic human rights. With the growth in displacement, demand for food, shelter, education and water has seen an increase.[24] IDPs face challenges with accessing these rights.[25] IDPs continue to be neglected by states. In certain cases, the government shut down camps without providing alternative shelters and even without prior consultation thereby leading to the violations of the rights to safety and livelihoods of IDPs.[26]              

Currently, only 33 African countries have ratified the Kampala Convention. These are Angola, Benin, Burkina Faso, Cameroon, Central African Republic, Chad, Cote d’Ivoire, Congo, Djibouti, the Democratic Republic of Congo, Equatorial Guinea, Ethiopia, Gabon, The Gambia, Guinea-Bissau, Lesotho, Liberia, Mali, Malawi, Sahrawi Arab Democratic Republic, Mozambique, Mauritania, Nigeria, Niger, Rwanda, Saharawi Arab Republic, Sierra Leone, Uganda, Somalia, South Sudan, Eswatini, Togo, Rwanda, Zambia, and Zimbabwe.[27] Some African countries have signed but not ratified the convention.[28] The Kampala Convention is already in force but seeks more ratifications. The Kampala Convention should also be ratified by all states that have signed it but have not done so yet. Therefore, it is critical that African nations assume accountability by ratifying this convention to ensure the protection of those displaced within their states.             

  1. Some key features of the Kampala Convention

The Kampala Convention adequately addresses the widely held belief and the general consensus that IDPs have been the most overlooked of vulnerable groups, without precise, comprehensive, and effective legal protection under international law.[29] International human rights law (IHRL) has made significant progress in protecting vulnerable populations with specific needs and severe dangers to their lives and livelihoods. The Convention on the Elimination of All forms of Discrimination Against Women (CEDAW) for example, provides comprehensive and legally binding protection for women including IDP women.[30] Other human rights treaties also cover IDPs simply because they are a universal human right.[31] On the other hand, international humanitarian law (IHL) has explicitly recognised rights related to IDPs displacement situations. It grants protection to civilians which includes IDPs but only in situations of international and national armed conflict.[32] However, international laws do not specifically mention IDPs, and they fail to comprehensively address the special needs and distinctive circumstances of IDPs.[33] Calling on governments to take responsibility for the internally displaced and requesting international assistance are made easier by singling out IDPs to take action on their behalf. IDPs are covered under the UN Guiding Principles on Internal Displacement, however, these guidelines do not constitute legal obligations or guarantees; rather, they are only statements of advising non-binding principles.

The Kampala Convention makes a significant contribution to international law in addition to bridging the protection gap.[34] It restates current African Union (AU) law and international law, including principles of international humanitarian law and human rights. It offers a distinct legal framework to address the particularities of internal displacement on the basis of reinforcing these international principles and combining them into one instrument.[35] It provides a more definite and solid legal foundation for the protection of IDPs on the African continent.[36] The Kampala Convention is therefore the first-ever binding comprehensive instrument governing displacement in the sense that it captures all causes and stages of displacement and expands on regional and international instruments on the rights of internally displaced persons.[37] 

The Kampala Convention enforces a legally binding definition of IDPs and internal displacement. IDPs mean “persons or groups of persons who have been forced or obliged to flee or to leave their homes or places of habitual residence, in particular as a result of or in order to avoid the effects of armed conflict, situations of generalized violence, violations of human rights or natural or human-made disasters, and who have not crossed an internationally recognized state border.”[38] While internal displacement means “the involuntary or forced movement, evacuation or relocation of persons or groups of persons within internationally recognized state borders.”[39] A person must not have crossed an internationally recognised border in order to qualify as an internally displaced person. This definition shows that IDPs could be citizens or even stateless persons habitually residing in a state but have been displaced from their original places of dwelling in that same state. IDPs are vulnerable, thus states and the government have a duty to protect and assist them without discrimination.[40]    

The primary responsibility lies on states to prevent and assist displaced persons, the Kampala Convention also impose extensive obligations on a vast number of actors including armed groups, non-state actors and other relevant actors who are to play a role in protecting and assisting displaced persons and are also accountable for displacement.[41] Article 3 place emphasis on the general obligations of the state to respect the dignity and humanity of internally displaced persons, respect international humanitarian law, desist from the arbitral displacement and  the responsibility to prevent  some of the main factors that lead to internal displacement, such as political, social, cultural and economic exclusion and marginalization. The Kampala Convention’s objectives and general obligations are listed in article 2 and 3.[42] In line with international humanitarian law, the Kampala Convention recognises that, in situations of armed conflict, non-state armed groups have obligations to respect the rights of IDPs. For example, armed groups are prohibited from carrying out arbitrary displacement and states are also held accountable for ensuring that these obligations are fulfilled.[43] States ae also to ensure that non-state actors involved in the exploration and exploitation of economic and natural resources leading to displacement are held accountable.[44]  This clause can be applicable in circumstances where private firms play a part in environmental degradation that leads to internal displacement.[45]    

Article 4(1) to (4) spells out obligations specific to states’ parties in terms of protection from displacement. These includes ensuring cooperation with humanitarian agencies and civil society organisations, ensuring respect for human rights obligations and humanitarian law in order to prevent and avoid conditions that might lead to the arbitrary displacement. Further protection measures include, devising early warning systems, in cases of possible future displacement and establish and implement disaster risk reduction strategies. Thus, applying this in the context of climate related disasters for example will enable states prepare adequately for emergency situations. Additionally, it will assist states in facilitating productive interactions with pertinent stakeholders regarding protection dynamics and obligations.[46]  

As a contribution to other IDP frameworks, the Kampala Convention strengthens the prohibition on arbitrary displacement, and the right to a remedy for those affected by displacement. It elaborates on the right to be protected against arbitrary displacement. Article 4(4)(a)-(h) state this right in detail, pointing out acts regarded as a violation of this right. The areas covered is very wide including displacement as a consequence of discrimination based on policies of racial discrimination or other similar practices aimed at or resulting in altering the ethnic, religious or racial composition of the population,’ armed conflict unless in situations of armed conflict for military necessity or for the protection of civilian populations, generalized violence and human rights violations, harmful practices, forced or unnecessary evacuations, or collective punishment or displacement of similar gravity of all of the above for which no justification is provided for under international law and international humanitarian law. [47]

The above list is non-exhaustive.>[48] The Kampala Convention builds on existing frameworks for internal displacement, especially the UN Guiding Principles on Internal Displacement and the Protocol on the Protection and Assistance of Internally Displaced Persons in the Great Lakes Region.[49] One important area in which this is the case is the recognition of harmful practices as a root cause of displacement in Africa.[50] Harmful practices such as Female Genital Mutilation (FGM), breast flattening and child forced marriages are some of the human right challenges faced by women and girls in Africa.[51] The Kampala Convention’s prohibition of harmful practices, reflects the African context.[52] Arbitrary displacement is now defined as a result of “generalised violence or violations of human rights.” There is no clause like this one for internally displaced people in any other framework. Thus, in order to prevent forced displacement, the Kampala Convention offers a broad perspective.        

Displacements can cause the loss of land, livelihoods, and accessibility to cultural places for indigenous people in some countries, where they are affected disproportionately.[53] Similar to the UN Guiding Principles on Internal Displacement, the Kampala Convention provides that states should endeavour to protect communities with special dependence on land.[54] These groups are to be granted access to their lands when they return to their place of origin.[55] The Kampala Convention does establish a significant negative duty on states parties requiring them to refrain from displacing these populations without an overriding and compelling public interest for such.[56]         

The obligation of protection and assistance also applies during the phase of displacement. States parties are required during this phase to adopt special measures for protecting and assisting vulnerable persons such as ‘separated and unaccompanied children, female heads of households, expectant mothers, mothers with young children, the elderly and persons with disabilities or with communicable diseases.’[57] Ensuring these categories of persons special needs also show that the convention recognises challenges faced by these groups. During displacement, many children are unable to access education, and some are especially susceptible to being coerced into armed group recruitment.[58] Displaced women and girls are vulnerable to a range of sexual violence including rape especially during armed conflict.[59] Elderly persons are also particularly vulnerable to abuse and neglect during conflict or natural disasters, with difficulties accessing support due to limited mobility, impaired vision, and chronic illnesses.[60] The convention therefore specifically obliges states to ensure that the reproductive and sexual health of internally displaced women are taken care of and states must also ensure that victims of sexual and other related abuses are provided with appropriate psycho-social support.[61]   

Furthermore, states parties are to avoid discrimination and ensure that the living conditions of internally displaced persons are satisfactory by ensuring their safety, dignity and security,[62] cooperate with other state parties,[63] protect and assist persons displaced as a result of natural or human-made disasters which includes climate change.[64] Thus, the Kampala Convention unlike the UN Guiding Principles on Internal Displacement expands the scope of disasters by explicitly including climate change. [65] Although states bear the primary responsibility to protect displaced persons, in case states do not have the adequate resource, they are to cooperate in seeking the assistance of international organisations and humanitarian agencies, civil society organisations and other relevant actors.[66] States are also to respect the right of internally displaced persons to peacefully request or seek protection and assistance without any persecution or punishment for seeking such assistance.[67] States are mandated to respect humanitarian principles of humanity, neutrality, impartiality and independence of humanitarian actors.[68]

Apart from the obligations of state parties, the Kampala Convention also covers other actors including the African Union, humanitarian agencies, and international organisations. The obligations of international organisations and humanitarian agencies are listed in article 6. These include respecting international norms and codes of conduct. Furthermore, the Kampala Convention represents African states’ recognition that, if internal displacement is not appropriately addressed at the national level, it may become a legitimate international concern.[69] It includes key obligations such as the AU’s cardinal principle on the responsibility to protect in situations where human rights are grave, including war crimes and crimes against humanity.[70] Furthermore, the  AU is required by the Kampala Convention to respect member states’ right to ask the AU to intervene to restore peace and security.[71] In addition, the AU is tasked with assisting states in their efforts to protect and support IDPs by organising resource mobilisation, working with international organisations, humanitarian agencies, and civil society organisations, sharing information with the African Commission on Human and Peoples' Rights(ACHPR), collaborating with the ACHPR Special Rapporteur for Refugees, Returnees, IDPs, and Asylum Seekers, and organising the Conference of states parties.[72]   

Article 7 provides for the protection of internally displaced persons in situations of armed conflict, and it ensures that armed group members are held criminally responsible for violating the rights of internally displaced persons.[73]  

The Kampala Convention makes provision for protection in situations of development projects.[74] Furthermore, it advances durable solutions by way of return, relocation or resettlement.[75] Therefore, in these processes, it is mandatory that states allow IDP participation and involvement in all actions taken to provide assistance to and protect IDPs.[76] The convention also emphasises the significance of compensation[77]and ensures the registration and documentation rights of IDPs. [78] Given that IDPs are forced to evacuate hastily, they may not be able during this process to carry along their civil documents or in certain cases, these  documents are destroyed or lost. The lack of documentation hinders them from accessing their fundamental rights.[79] The protection of the rights of IDPs to access documentation ensures that IDPs do not become at risk of statelessness.  

To ensure further accountability and monitoring, the Kampala Convention provides for institutional protection through a Conference of State Parties to the Kampala Convention, the African Peer Review Mechanism and the African Commission on Human and Peoples' Rights.[80]       

The Kampala Convention acknowledges the burdens placed on host communities as a result of their efforts to protect and assist IDPs. In this regard, the convention mandates that evaluations of both IDPs’ and host communities’ needs be conducted, and that assistance be extended to both groups.[81]     

  1. Impact of the Kampala Convention in African countries that have ratified it

African countries that have ratified the Kampala Convention can also serve as examples to countries that have not done so. A brief recourse to the domestic legislation and policies of these countries will show the positive impact this convention contributes to ensuring that states protect displaced persons. The Kampala Convention has been domesticated and put into action in African states that have already ratified or adopted it. Some states have adopted instruments that particularly pertain to IDPs’ protection, while others have implemented laws or policies that concentrate on them. In 2018, Niger adopted the Law on the Protection and Assistance of Internally Displaced People.[82] While in 2016, the Ministry of Humanitarian Action and Disaster Management was established to coordinate the national humanitarian response to internal displacement.[83] Ethiopia’s Electoral Proclamation No. 1162/2019 provides for IDPs’ citizens enfranchisement in election.[84] Additionally, it guarantees IDPs' access to polling places. Section 17 guarantees the establishment of special voting locations at or close to the location of IDPs.[85] Zambia Guidelines for the compensation and resettlement of internally displaced persons (IDPs) adopted in 2013, particularly refer to the domestication of the Kampala Convention.[86]    

The Framework for the Resettlement of Internally Displaced Persons (IDPs) in Zimbabwe (January 2011) helps humanitarian actors to evaluate and promote resettlement as a durable solution option for IDPs in Zimbabwe.[87] The framework adopts relevant legal principles which include the Kampala Convention in order to provide internationally recognised standards. Somalia developed its first policy on IDPs in 2019.[88] The policy serves as a framework that aims to protect IDPs and refugee-returnees from potential forced displacement, it also aims to provide aid and protection during displacement and secure durable solutions for the displaced. It draws substantially on the Kampala Convention. Somalia has also incorporated IDPs in its national development plan.[89]   

Nigeria’s National Policy on Internally Displaced Persons 2012, which was adopted in 2021, serves as a framework for ensuring national duty in terms of preventing and protecting citizens and non-citizens from the occurrences of arbitrary displacement including other types of displacement. It ensures that assistance and protection needs are met during displacement and further ensures displaced person’s rehabilitation, return, re-integration and resettlement.[90] Nigeria has also amended its National Commission on Refugees, Migrants and Internally Displaced Persons Act to include certain provisions of the Kampala Convention.[91]

In 2014, Burkina Faso adopted a law relating to the prevention and management of risks, humanitarian crises, and disasters.[92] Malawi has a Durable Solutions Framework for Internally Displaced Persons and Flood affected Populations (2015). Mozambique established the Legal Regime Disaster Risk Management and Reduction in 2020.[93] It also signed a Peace Accord in 2019.[94] In Cameroon, the government established Humanitarian Coordination Centres (HCC) to coordinate humanitarian responses to crisis in the northwest/southwest regions.[95] A draft law providing protection and assistance to internally displaced persons in the Republic of Chad, codifies the measures and responsibilities laid out by the Kampala Convention.[96]

In terms of peace agreements, the Revitalised Agreement on the Resolution of the Conflict in the Republic of South Sudan[97] contains particular provisions on the voluntary return and reintegration of IDPs and registration and documentation of IDPs. The Political Agreement for Peace and Reconciliation in the Central African Republic also contains similar provisions.[98] The Agreement for Peace and Reconciliation in Mali Resulting from the Algiers Process contain provisions that ensure the return, repatriation, reintegration and reinsertion of displaced persons and measures established to assist them are in accordance with the Kampala Convention.[99] Other countries such as Liberia,[100] and South Sudan,[101] have made further efforts by putting in place draft national legislations for the protection of internally displaced persons to give effect to the Kampala Convention. These legislations are still pending.            

  1. The importance of ratifying the Kampala Convention and a call to action

Ratifying the Kampala Convention will direct African governments in taking domestic normative, policy, and practical measures to address internal displacement efficiently because it offers a comprehensive framework for the protection of IDPs in terms of all causes of displacement and all phases of displacement.

Given that the Kampala Convention ensures international cooperation in providing humanitarian assistance to IDPs, this shows that states are not left alone in dealing with internal displacement. Ratifying the Kampala Convention allows states to build strategic partnerships with international actors such as UN agencies. States will also be able to receive the necessary technical assistance needed.   

One of the most crucial components of protecting internally displaced people is holding those responsible for acts of displacement accountable. The Kampala Convention places this at the fore. In order to ensure protection and assistance to IDPs, state authorities are in the heart of the action of accountability. Ratifying the convention will ensure that society can hold the government accountable for not just acts of state but also non-state actors such as multinational companies and private military or security companies.      

Greater expenditures in diplomatic, conflict-resolution and peacebuilding are required given the dispersed character of African conflict today. The Kampala Convention’s enforcement of state parties’ cooperation promotes solidarity and also provides a platform for sharing durable solutions between states parties.  It can also help states strengthen their national policies aimed at preventing and eradicating the fundamental causes of internal displacement. The establishment of the monitoring mechanism (Conference of Parties) where states are to oversee and monitor the implementation of the convention contributes to further follow up. It ensures that states are held accountable in keeping with their obligations. Ratifying the convention will help states benefit from the experiences of other states particularly states that have limited resources to respond to a particular disaster. Furthermore, it will provide the opportunity to address significant gaps in the data and knowledge available about patterns of displacement.   

Civil societies have a role to play. Since the Kampala Convention encourages states to cooperate with civil society organisations and other relevant actors while fulfilling their obligations to protect from displacement. Ratifying the Kampala Convention will give national authorities more capability and knowledge to carry out changes that are required to put the Convention into action. This will help to further ensure state accountability and effective protection and aid for IDPs. Civil society can encourage initiatives to reunite families split up during displacement and keep an eye on the Convention’s observance.   

The Kampala Convention is an example of African tradition, which includes hospitality and protecting vulnerable populations like IDPs. The fact that it is a human rights treaty that upholds traditional African principles and seeks to address the continent’s internal displacement issues should encourage states to ratify it.   

Governments will win international respect by ratifying the Kampala Convention, and this will inspire other states to follow suit. Ratification of the Kampala Convention is a sign of national accountability because it conveys the government’s awareness of the problem of displacement and shows the political will to address the issue.    

It is time to call for more focus on the issue of displacement, promote a more robust continental involvement, and improve legal protections for internally displaced people in light of the momentum and interest that have been evident in recent years towards the advancement of the rights of internally displaced people.  The AU organs must endeavour to redouble its efforts to persuade states to sign and ratify the Kampala convention. To encourage African states to ratify the convention, it must also engage in high-level discussions with them. Various strategies to increase awareness on the importance of ratifying the Kampala Convention must be created across all facets of African society.     


[1] R Adeola ‘The impact of the African Union Convention on the Protection and Assistance of Internally Displaced Persons in Africa’ (2019) 19 African Human Rights Journal. See also OAU Convention Governing the Specific Aspects of Refugee Problems in Africa (1969) (1969 Refugee Convention).

[2] Adeola(n1). See also African Union Executive Council ‘Decision on the Meeting of Experts on the Review of OAU/AU/ Treaties Doc. EX/CL/95 (V)’ EX.CL/Dec.129 (V) and African Union Executive Council ‘Decision on the Situation of Refugees, Returnees and Displaced Persons’ EX.CL/ Dec.127 (V). The emergence of the Kampala Convention started with the decision of the AU Executive Council to find solutions to the issue of internal displacement in Africa through a binding instrument.  

[3] UN Guiding Principles on Internal Displacement adopted by the Commission on Human Rights at its fifty-fourth session, E/CN.4/1998/53/Add.2 11 February 1998.

[4] Preamble Kampala Convention.  

[5] ‘Record 36 million Africans forcibly displaced is 44 percent of global total’ available at: https://reliefweb.int/report/world/record-36-million-africans-forcibly-displaced-44-percent-global-total

[6] IDMC ‘2022 Mid-year updates on internal displacement’ available at:   https://story.internal-displacement.org/2022-mid-year-update/index.html (accessed 11 October 2022).

[7]‘Democratic Republic of Congo – Insecurity and displacement (DG ECHO, UNOCHA) (ECHO Daily Flash of 12 May 2022)’ https://reliefweb.int/report/democratic-republic-congo/democratic-republic-congo-insecurity-and-displacement-dg-echo (accessed 9 November 2022).

[8] IDMC ‘2022 mid-year updates on internal displacement’ available at:   https://story.internal-displacement.org/2022-mid-year-update/index.html (accessed 11 October 2022).

[9] IOM ‘Ethiopia crisis response plan 2022’ https://crisisresponse.iom.int/response/ethiopia-crisis-response-plan-2022  (8 November 2022).

[10] As above.

[11] ‘Huge spike’ in global conflict caused record number of displacements in 2021’ The Guardian 19 May 2022.

 https://www.theguardian.com/global-development/2022/may/19/huge-spike-in-global-conflict-caused-record-number-of-displacements-in-2021 (accessed 6 November 2022).

[12]‘UNHCR mid-year trends 2022’  https://reliefweb.int/report/world/unhcr-mid-year-trends-2022 (accessed 8 November 2022).

[13] ‘UNHCR raises alarm over Mozambique’s ‘’invisible’’ crisis as climate shocks worsen displacement’ https://www.unhcr.org/news/briefing/2022/5/627a6c404/unhcr-raises-alarm-mozambiques-invisible-crisis-climate-shocks-worsen-displacement.html (accessed 8 November 2022).

[14] IDMC(n6).

[15] ‘Neglected crisis Advocacy’  https://plan-international.org/un/blog/2022/07/12/neglected-crisis-advocacy-brief/  (accessed 8 November 2022).

[16] IDMC ‘Disaster displacement A global review 2008-2018’ May 2019

[17]   D Dunne ‘Analysis: Africa’s unreported extreme weather in 2022 and climate change’ https://www.preventionweb.net/news/analysis-africas-unreported-extreme-weather-2022-and-climate-change (accessed 8 November 2022). See also Conflict, natural disasters displaced nearly 60 million in 2021- Report Africa news 19 May 2022.

[18] IOM ‘In the face of climate change, migration offers an adaptation strategy in Africa’ 5 September 2022 https://www.iom.int/news/face-climate-change-migration-offers-adaptation-strategy-africa  (accessed 10 November 2022).

[19] UNHCR ‘One million people displaced by drought in Somalia’ 11 August 2022 https://www.unhcr.org/news/press/2022/8/62f4c3894/million-people-displaced-drought-somalia.html

[20] L Schlein ‘Climate Change, Conflict Forcing More People in Africa to Flee’ 7 September 2022 https://www.voanews.com/a/climate-change-conflict-forcing-more-people-in-africa-to-flee/6735427.html (accessed 4 November 2022).

[21] IOM ‘Four challenges facing displaced persons in Somalia https://weblog.iom.int/four-challenges-facing-displaced-persons-somalia (accessed 4 November 2022).  See also UNHCR ‘UNHCR raises alarm over Mozambique’s ‘’invisible’’ crisis as climate shocks worsen displacement’ https://www.unhcr.org/news/briefing/2022/5/627a6c404/unhcr-raises-alarm-mozambiques-invisible-crisis-climate-shocks-worsen-displacement.html  (accessed 8 November 2022).

[22] UNHCR (n21).

[23] The World Bank ‘Climate change could further impact Africa’s recovery pushing 86 Million Africans to migrate within their own countries by 2050’ https://www.worldbank.org/en/news/press-release/2021/10/27/climate-change-could-further-impact-africa-s-recovery-pushing-86-million-africans-to-migrate-within-their-own-countries (accessed 8 November 2022).  

[24]African Development Bank Group ‘Burkina Faso: African Development Bank supports government efforts to relieve internally displaced persons’ https://www.afdb.org/en/news-and-events/burkina-faso-african-development-bank-supports-government-efforts-relieve-internally-displaced-persons-55090 (accessed 11 October 2022).

[25] ‘Those who returned are suffering : Impact of camp shutdowns on people displaced by Boko Haram conflict in Nigeria’  https://www.hrw.org/report/2022/11/02/those-who-returned-are-suffering/impact-camp-shutdowns-people-displaced-boko (accessed 8 November 2022).  

[26] As above.

[27] https://au.int/sites/default/files/treaties/36846-sl-AFRICAN_UNION_CONVENTION_FOR_THE_PROTECTION_AND_ASSISTANCE_OF_INTERNALLY_DISPLACED_PERSONS_IN_AFRICA_KAMPALA_CONVENTION_1.pdf   (accessed 8 November 2022). 

[28] Burundi, Comoros, Eritrea, Ghana, Guinea, Madagascar, Namibia, Senegal, Sao Tome & Principe, Tanzania, Tunisia.

[29] MT Maru The Kampala Convention and its contributions to international law: Legal analyses and interpretations of the African Union Convention for the Protection and Assistance of Internally Displaced Persons (2014) 2-4.

[30]Maru (n 29) 4.  

[31] International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights, adopted by UN General Assembly, Resolution 2200A (XXI) of 16 December 1966; entered into force on 23 March 1976, Convention on the Rights of the Child, adopted by General Assembly, UN Doc A/44/49 20 November 1989; entered into force 2 September 1990. N Schimmel ‘Trapped by sovereignty: The fate of internally displaced persons and their Lack of equal human rights protection under international law’ (2022) 185 Sage Journals.

[32] Schimmel (n 31).

[33] As above.

[34] As above.

[35] Making the Kampala Convention work for IDPs Guide for civil society on supporting the ratification and implementation of the Convention for the Protection and Assistance of Internally Displaced Persons in Africa                         July 2010 13 available at: https://www.internaldisplacement.org/sites/default/files/publications/documents/2010-making-the-kampala-convention-work-thematic-en.pdf  (accessed 8 November 2022).   

[36] As above.

[37] art 3 Kampala Convention.

[38] Art 1 Kampala Convention.

[39] As above.  

[40] ‘Statelessness and displacement a humanitarian challenge’ https://files.institutesi.org/stateless_displacement_brief.pdf (accessed 10 November 2022).  See also art 9(1)(a) Kampala Convention.

[41] Art 2 Kampala Convention. See art 1 for definition of terms including non-state actors and armed groups.  

[42] Art 2 Kampala Convention: its objectives are as follows: ‘(1) Promote and strengthen regional and national measures to prevent or mitigate, prohibit and eliminate root causes of internal displacement as well as provide for durable solutions; (2) Establish a legal framework for preventing internal displacement, and protecting and assisting internally displaced persons in Africa; (3) Establish a legal framework for solidarity, cooperation, promotion of durable solutions and mutual support between the States Parties in order to combat displacement and address its consequences; (4) Provide for the obligations and responsibilities of States Parties, with respect to the prevention of internal displacement and protection of, and assistance, to internally displaced persons; (5) Provide for the respective obligations, responsibilities and roles of armed groups, non-state actors and other relevant actors, including civil society organizations, with respect to the prevention of internal displacement and protection of, and assistance to, internally displaced persons.’

[43] Art 3(h)&(i) Kampala Convention.

[44] Art 3(1) (i) Kampala Convention.

[45]AM Abebe ‘The Kampala Convention and environmentally induced displacement in Africa’ IOM Intersessional Workshop on Climate Change, Environmental Degradation and Migration, Geneva, Switzerland 29-30 March 2011.

[46] R Adeola ‘Climate Change, Internal Displacement and the Kampala Convention’ Policy Briefing Climate Change and Migration May 2020 4.

[47] Art 4(4)(a)-(h) Kampala Convention.

[48] See art 4(4)(h) Kampala Convention. Art 1 Kampala Convention defines harmful practice as ‘all behaviour, attitudes and/or practices which negatively affect the fundamental rights of persons, such as but not limited to their right to life, health, dignity, education, mental and physical integrity and education.’

[49] Protection and Assistance of Internally Displaced Persons in the Great Lakes Region adopted by the International Conference on the Great Lakes Region (ICGLR) in 2006.

[50] R Adeola The Kampala Convention and the Protection of Persons Internally Displaced by Harmful Practices in Africa (2021).

[51] United Nations ‘The third African Girls Summit - Ending harmful practices is a human rights priority’ 20 November 2021 https://violenceagainstchildren.un.org/news/third-african-girls-summit-ending-harmful-practices-human-rights-priority (9 November 2022).  

[52] R Adeola ‘The Kampala Convention and the right not to be arbitrarily displaced’ Forced Migration Review 16 17.

[53]EI Laltaika ‘Modes of dispossession of indigenous lands and territories in Africa’ in M Ashami and others Lands of the Future Anthropological Perspectives on Pastoralism, Land Deals and Tropes of Modernity in Eastern Africa (2021) 1. See also UNHCR ‘Protecting internally displaced persons: A handbook for National Human Rights Institutions 10.

[54] Art 4(5) Kampala Convention. See principle 9 UN Guiding principle.

[55] Art 11(5) Kampala Convention.

[56] Art 4(5) Kampala Convention.

[57] Art 9 Kampala Convention.

[58] D Kuwali ‘From Durable Solutions to Holistic Solutions: Prevention of Displacement in Africa’ (2013) 6 African Journal of Legal Studies available at  https://brill.com/view/journals/ajls/6/2-3/article-p265_6.xml?language=en (accessed 10 November 2022).

[59] Human Rights Council ‘Conflict-related sexual violence against women and girls in South Sudan’ 49th session 28 February–1 April 2022.

[60] UNHCR ‘Older persons’ https://www.unhcr.org/older-persons.html (accessed 10 November 2022).

[61]Art 9(2)(d) Kampala Convention.

[62] Art 9 Kampala Convention.

[63] Art 5(2) Kampala Convention.

[64] Art 5(4) Kampala Convention

[65] See principle 6 1998 UN Guiding principle.

[66] Art 5(6) Kampala Convention.

[67] Art 5(9) Kampala Convention.

[68]Art 5(8) Kampala Convention.

[69] Art 8(1) Kampala Convention.

[70] As above.

[71] Art 8(2) Kampala Convention.

[72] Art 8(3) Kampala Convention.

[73] Art 1 Kampala Convention defines armed groups as ‘dissident armed forces or other organised armed groups that are distinct from the armed forces of the state.’

[74] Art 10 Kampala Convention.

[75] Art 11 Kampala Convention.

[76] As above.

[77] Art 12 Kampala Convention.

[78] Art 13 Kampala Convention.

[79] ‘Briefing note: Civil documentation for IDPs in Mozambique (August 2021)’

 https://reliefweb.int/report/mozambique/briefing-note-civil-documentation-idps-mozambique-august-2021-enpt  (accessed 10 November 2022).

[80] Art 14 Kampala Convention. See also Adeola(n1).

[81] Art 5(5) Kampala Convention.

[82] Law No. 2018-74 of 10 December 2018 on the Protection and Assistance of Internally Displaced Persons.

[83] ‘Niger: A Consultative Process for Adopting a National Law on Internal Displacement’

 https://reliefweb.int/report/niger/niger-consultative-process-adopting-national-law-internal-displacement (accessed 16 April 2022).

[84] Electoral Proclamation No 1162/2019.

[85] Sec 17(1) Electoral Proclamation No 1162/2019.

[86]Guidelines for the Compensation and Resettlement of Internally Displaced Persons (IDPs) available at:  https://www.refworld.org/pdfid/5b72a9194.pdf (accessed 16 April 2022).

[87]Framework for the Resettlement of Internally Displaced Persons (IDPs) in Zimbabwe January 2011 available at  https://www.refworld.org/pdfid/5aabe1cd4.pdf  (accessed 17 April 2022).   

[88] National Policy on Refugee-Returnees and Internally Displaced Persons (IDPs) 2019.

[89] Somalia National Development Plan 2020 to 2024.

[90] Para 2.1 2012 National Policy on Internally Displaced Persons (IDPs) in Nigeria.

[91] E Massingham & others The Kampala Convention: Key recommendations ten years on (2019) 19.

[92] Law No 012-2014/AN.

[93] Law No 10/2020. This repealed Law No 15/2014 establishing the legal framework for disaster management. Law No 10/2020 is implemented through the Decree No 76/2020.

[94] ‘Joint communique on the implementation of the Maputo Accord for Peace and Reconciliation’ 6 June 2020

 https://www.dfa.ie/irish-embassy/mozambique/news-and-events/news-archive/joint-communique-on-the-implementation-of-the-maputo-accord-for-peace-and-reconciliation.html (accessed 19 April 2022).

[95] UNICEF ‘Cameroon humanitarian situation report’                                              https://www.unicef.org/media/78701/file/Cameroon-SitRep-June-2019.pdf (accessed 9 November 2022).

[96]A Lamarche ‘Responding to Chad’s displacement crisis in the Lac province and the implementation of the Kampala Convention’  29 September 2022    https://www.refugeesinternational.org/reports/2022/9/27/responding-to-chads-displacement-crisis-in-the-lac-province-and-the-implementation-of-the-kampala-convention (accessed 5 November 2022).

[97] Revitalised Agreement on the Resolution of the Conflict in the Republic of South Sudan (R-ARCSS) Addis Ababa, Ethiopia 12 September 2018 para 3.1 available at: https://www.peaceagreements.org/viewmasterdocument/2112  (19 April 2022).

[98] Political Agreement for Peace and Reconciliation in the Central African Republic 6 February 2019 para II(K).

[99]Agreement for Peace and Reconciliation in Mali resulting from the Algiers process available at: https://www.un.org/en/pdfs/EN-ML_150620_Accord-pour-la-paix-et-la-reconciliation-au-Mali_Issu-du-Processus-d%27Alger.pdf  (accessed 18 April 2022).

[100] Liberia: Act for the implementation of the African Union Convention for the Protection and
Assistance of Internally Displaced Persons in Africa 2018 (Draft).

[101] Draft Protection and Assistance to Internally Displaced Persons Act 2019.


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