The Centre for Human Rights at the Faculty of Law, University of Pretoria is hosting an academic conference on disability rights in Africa on the theme Overcoming obstacles: towards the effective implementation of the United Nations Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities (CRPD) in Africa'.

The Conference will be held at University of Pretoria, SRC Chambers on Tuesday, 5 and Wednesday 6 November 2013. The conference will coincide with the launch of first issue of the African Disability RightsYearbook on the evening of 5 November.

It is anticipated that papers presented at the 5 November conference would be subsequently re-worked for consideration for publication in the 2014 issue of the African Disability Rights Yearbook.

More information on this Conference:

The exclusion and marginalisation of people with disabilities is a global experience, and the African region is no exception. The UN General Assembly’s adoption of the CRPD in December 2006 was hailed as a milestone, marking a paradigm shift from treating disability as a mere welfare issue to treating it as a human rights issue with vertical as well as horizontal obligations for the respect, protection and fulfilment of the equality and non-discrimination rights of people with disabilities. To date, 32 African States have ratified the CRPD. But what does this mean at the grassroots level and for the real lives lived by people with disabilities? Has there been effective implementation of state obligations arising from CRPD in the African region? If not, what are the impeding factors and how might they be overcome?

The conference is aimed at interrogating issues relating to the effective implementation of the CRPD in the African region. The conference is multidisciplinary. It will bring together scholars, practitioners, disability activists and organizations working in the field of disability and disability rights. Accepted abstract seek to share theoretical as well as practical perspectives and insights on Disability and promoting awareness-raising, disability education, equal recognition before the law and access to justice, disability convention and overcoming implementation challenges at the domestic level.

Contact details
Enquiries about the conference should be sent to:

Ms Carole Viljoen
Email: carole.viljoen@up.ac.za
Tel: + 27 (0) 12 420 3810


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