The Universal Periodic Review (UPR) of the Human Rights Council examined the situation in Togo in October 2016 for a second time.
Thanks to its engagement on the ground with its local partner, BNCE-Togo (Fight against sexual abuse and Childhood without bars programs), BICE could draft a comprehensive monitoring report of the recommendations issued during the first UPR.
Progress has been made to protect children
Thanks to the recommendations issued during the first UPR, laws and public policies on the rights of the child have made significant progress.
The Togolese authorities that have been driven by BICE and BNCE-Togo transformed the Guide of good practices to protect minors in conflict with law into national directives.
Furthermore, the following measures have been adopted:
- The decree on the organisation and functioning of the National Committee on the Rights of the Child;
- The law on legal aid that makes children’s access to justice easier;
- The Strategic Plan to make birth registration easier.
Finally, 24 juvenile judges have been appointed.
The rights of the child in Togo are at the heart of our concerns
This real progress that has been made on the rights of the child in Togo has to be followed by concrete measures.
In this respect, BICE notes that:
- The law on legal laid is not being enforced in the absence of appropriate structures;
- Many obstacles to birth registration remain;
- Juvenile justice services face many functional problems on the ground;
- Measures to fight against violence towards children too often remain ineffective (malfunction of the early warning system “Allo 1011”, noncompliance with standards for childcare facilities for vulnerable children, etc.).
On this basis, BICE has started again a new advocacy campaign at the United Nations. Many of our recommendations are taken into account by the Human Rights Council when issuing conclusions that will be finally adopted next March. Among them:
- The improvement of the birth registration system;
- The adoption and implementation of the national policy of the child welfare system;
- The improvement of the juvenile justice system;
- Justice for victims of sexual abuse;
- The quick implementation of the national mechanism for the prevention of torture (MPT).
As part of their programs, BICE and BNCE-Togo will continue to ensure that these new recommendations are being implemented and develop activities for that purpose.
To go further: Monitoring report of the Working Group on the UPR.