The African Charter on Democracy, Elections and Governance (the Democracy Charter) was adopted on the 30th January 2007. This was during the 8th ordinary session of the Assembly of the African Union (AU). It came into effect on the 15th February 2012. By April 2013, the Charter has been signed by 41 countries out of which only 17 countries have so far ratified. The Democracy Charter aspires to address issues of poor governance and unconstitutional changes of government in Africa. It specifically deals with mismanagement of electoral processes, human rights abuses, and inadequate participation of all citizens in their governance. It aims to reinforce the commitment of the African states through the AU towards the universal values of: democracy, respect for human rights, the rule of law, supremacy of the Constitution and constitutional order, in the political arrangements of the AU member States.
AFRICAN CHARTER ON DEMOCRACY, ELECTIONS AND GOVERNANCE (PDF)