The African Women's Protocol and sexual rights
Lucyline Nkatha, Murungi
MetadataShow full item record
‘Sexual rights’ are defined to include the rights of all persons free of coercion, violence and discrimination to the highest attainable standards of sexual health, including access to sexual and reproductive health care services. The entry point for the notion of sexual rights in the international community was the World Conference on Human Rights in Vienna. The conference affirmed for the first time that acts of violence against women impair and nullify the enjoyment of their rights and freedoms. Subsequent global and regional forums have since contributed to the understanding of ‘sexual rights’ as human rights issues. Article 14 of the African Women’s Protocol builds upon these gains and enhances the sexual rights discourse in several ways; the article pioneered the inclusion of ‘sexual rights’ in a human rights instrument, and recognises the link between women’s sexuality, their dignity, and other rights. A purposive and holistic interpretation of the article is crucial to the advancement of the sexual rights of girls and women in Africa.