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Oxfam’s mission is to work with others to overcome poverty and suffering. Our interpretation of poverty goes beyond lack of finances to encompass lack of capabilities, powerlessness, and inequality. Our fight to overcome poverty and suffering focuses on the right to a sustainable livelihood, water, education, health, protection and security, a voice in public life, and freedom from discrimination. The promotion of gender equality and women’s rights is therefore at the heart of our efforts. When the Protocol to the African Charter on Human and People’s Rights on the Rights of Women entered into force, it became a potentially effective tool for advancing the rights of African women. Unfortunately, unless people from all walks of life, including grassroots women, judges, police officers, government officials, and men and women’s rights advocates know about such instruments, their effectiveness will be grossly undermined. Every effort must be made to promote the popularisation, domestication, and implementation of the Protocol by encouraging effective partnerships between civil-society organisations (CSOs) and government institutions.

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