AFRICAN CHARTER ON THE RIGHTS AND WELFARE OF THE CHILD
The African Charter on the Rights and Welfare of the Child, sometimes known as the African Children's Charter (ACC) was adopted by the Organization for African Unity in 1990 and entered into force on November 29, 1999. As of November, 2005, thirty nine countries have signed the charter and thirty seven have ratified, although some countries which have ratified did not sign and others which have signed have not ratified. The ACC is the first regional treaty on children's rights.
Article 4: Best Interests of the Child
2. In all judicial or administrative proceedings affecting a child who is capable of communicating his/her own views, and opportunity shall be provided for the views of the child to be heard either directly or through an impartial representative as a party to the proceedings, and those views shall be taken into consideration by the relevant authority in accordance with the provisions of appropriate law.
Article 7: Freedom of Expression
Every child who is capable of communicating his or her own views shall be assured the rights to express his opinions freely in all matters and to disseminate his opinions subject to such restrictions as are prescribed by laws.
List of Signatories and Ratifications: http://www.africa-union.org/Official_documents/Treaties_%20Conventions_%20Protocols/
Africa Union: http://www.africa-union.org/ (General governing body which adopted the Charter)
African Committee of Experts on the Rights and Welfare of the Child: http://www.africa-union.org/child/home.htm (Committee overseeing implementation of the Charter)
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