There has been a significant development with regard to the establishment and institutionalisation of the ACtHPR. During the 3rdOrdinary Session of the AU Assembly of Heads of State and Government in July 2004, a resolution was adopted concerning the seats of the organs of the AU. The most remarkable decision resolved that “the African Court on Human and Peoples’ Rights and the Court of Justice should be integrated into one Court”.
In particular, an argument advanced for the amalgamated court was the concern over the inadequate financial and personnel resources for two courts. In addition, the consideration into the merging of the two courts would invariably take into account the express desire to avoid the situation experienced by the European system, whereby the jurisprudence of the European Court of Human Rights and the decisions of the European Court of Justice emerged simultaneously, thus giving rise to two independent sets of human rights jurisprudence. The advantage of an amalgamation is that it will prevent the courts from working at cross purposes or inadvertently encroaching on each other’s jurisdiction.
The key issue with regard to the merging of the two Courts relates to the concern of the AU for an effective, well-resourced regional judicial system for upholding the rule of law, human dignity and human rights.
Status of ratification of the Protocol to the Statute to the African Court of Justice and Human Rights