Universal Periodic Review of EG

Universal Periodic Review of EG

EG Justice May 13, 2014
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Seventy six States proposed recommendations to Equatorial Guinea during the UPR session on May 5, with many of them voicing concern about the lack of real progress on human rights.

On May 5, 2014, Equatorial Guinea—through its Deputy Prime Minister in Charge of Human Rights, Mr. Alfonso Nsue Mokuy—presented its national report on the situation of human rights as part of the Universal Periodic Review (UPR), a peer review mechanism of the UN Human Rights Council. 

Seventy six States proposed recommendations to Equatorial Guinea during the session, with many of them voicing concern about the lack of real progress made by Equatorial Guinea toward implementing the recommendations accepted during its 2009 UPR.

Recommendations on issues affecting women and other vulnerable groups dominated the session. Particularly there were calls to eliminate violence against women, combat sexual harassment of and discrimination against women, improve low school attendance rates for young girls, and reduce the maternal mortality rate.  Women’s health issues were also referenced; specifically, Member States called on Equatorial Guinea to ensure women have access to basic health services, including reproductive care, and care for HIV and AIDS.  Equatorial Guinea was asked to do more to empower women and promote their representation and participation in civil services.

UN Member States urged Equatorial Guinea to abolish the death penalty and protect detainees from all forms of violence.  Several countries noted detention conditions inside the country need to be improved, and called on Equatorial Guinea to stop arbitrary detentions, release detainees in poor health, and hold security forces accountable for human rights violations, including torture.

Many Delegations—including many African States—called on Equatorial Guinea to ratify and implement pending international and regional human rights instruments; including the Second Optional Protocol to the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights,the Optional Protocol to the Convention against Torture, the Convention on Rights of Persons with Disabilities, and the Rome Statute, among others. Equatorial Guinea was also asked to speed up its process of complying with reporting obligations, and to submit past due reports.

Some delegations called on Equatorial Guinea to do more to combat corruption and embezzlement of public funds, and to increase transparency.  They urged Equatorial Guinea to sign and ratify the African Convention on Preventing and Fighting Corruption, and allocate the resources necessary to attain and guarantee economic, social, and cultural rights.

Accompanied by a 16-member delegation, Mr. Nsue Mokuy sought to deflect probing questions raised by UN delegations.  Misleadingly, Mr. Nsue Mokuy remarked that Equatorial Guinea had instituted a new law to combat corruption; safe drinking water was now available to 56% of the country’s residents, and regular inspection of detention facilities was underway.  He also claimed that there were no cases of torture in Equatorial Guinea, and that foreign journalists are able to operate freely inside the country.

These assertions are in clear contradiction to the reality on the ground, which has been fully documented in the reports submitted by more than a dozen local and international NGOs. These fabrications by the government of Equatorial Guinea at such an important forum, and having had the benefit of four years since the 2009/2010 UPR to improve its human rights record, show a clear disregard for the rights and wellbeing of the people of Equatorial Guinea; and shows the frivolity the Equatoguinean authorities accord to the UN Council’s UPR process.

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