The West African Human Rights Defenders Network (WAHRDN) has expressed concern that Women Human Rights Defenders, and Human Rights Defenders are facing numerous forms of intimidation due to their involvement in labor rights organizations.
The defenders in the course of carrying out their jobs are subjected to the risk of unfair dismissal or unemployment.
Some members of the network added that due to some of these development, some Women Human Rights Defenders practice self-censorship.
“They experience the fear of committing themselves or any members of their families to threats on a constant basis.
Based on the foregoing, the group therefore called for a synergy of actions for better protection.
We need to effectively communicate and coordinate actions to effectively address serious violations of their rights.”
According to WAHRDN, in order to surmount some of the numerous challenges, there is need to adopt a law to protect human rights Defenders, without any restrictive provisions for effective protection of the Civic space.
The Declaration on the Right and responsibility of individuals, groups and organs of Society to Promote and Protect universally recognized Human Rights and Fundamental Freedoms commonly known as the “The Declaration on Human Rights Defenders”, protect all individuals.
“It shows that the declaration is not just addressed to just states, and human rights Defenders, but to everyone. It indicates that we all have a role to fulfil as human rights Defenders. There is a global human rights movement that involves us all”.
The declaration also shows that human rights Defenders have an obligation under the Declaration to conduct peaceful activities.
“They have the right to conduct human rights work individually and in association with others. They have the right to meet or assemble peacefully”.
In the same vein, WAHRDN, further advised, Women Human Rights Defenders and Human Right Defenders to collaborate with international human rights Network.
“The bodies should continue to work behind the scenes in the event of constant threat. Publishing objective reports and data to enhance the credibility of the organization”.
Women Human Rights Defenders are wrongly accused of being rebellious women or family breakers.
Human rights defenders across the African continent decided to set up networks to monitor the observance of their rights in order to ensure the effectiveness of the declaration.