With UNDEF support, the African Charter on Democracy, Elections and Governance has now been ratified by 15 nations – a milestone which means the Charter will now enter into force.
To take effect, the Charter requires at least 15 Member States to sign and ratify. On 16 January 2012, Cameroon became the 15th country to deposit its instrument of ratification with the African Union Commission. As per Article 48 of the Charter, it will enter into force on 15 February, 2012.
For the past two years, UNDEF has financed an initiative by South African civil society organizations to build constituencies of support for the Charter, create national movements as well as international solidarity to promote dialogue and awareness. When the project began, only two countries had ratified the document. The campaign, which is coordinated by IDASA, the Institute for Democracy in South Africa, will now continue to seek the support of all Members of the African Union to ratify and implement the Charter.