Case Studies

Information and Internet Rights in Zimbabwe

This research paper, compiled by Izak Minnaar, highlights key advocacy principles in relation to information and internet rights, using the AfDec principles. The paper aims to guide MISA Zimbabwe in its efforts to embolden ordinary citizens to play an active role in the shaping of internet policy and the protection of their digital rights in Zimbabwe. Here, the assessment of key advocacy principles, , texts and references offers pertinent guidelines to strategically implement policies and law regulations that recognise, protect and promote digital rights. The internet is a powerful tool for the realisation of all human rights, thus it is incumbent that individuals have the means to exercise their fundamental right to access information, as highlighted in the paper. This research paper was supported by the AfDec Strategic Advocacy Fund.

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Bridging the Digital Gender Gap in Uganda: An assessment of women’s rights online based on the principles of the African Declaration on Internet Rights and Freedoms

This study conducted by the Women of Uganda Network (WOUGNET) assesses the status of women’s rights online in Uganda based on five of the key principles of the African Declaration on Internet Rights and Freedoms, namely internet access and affordability, marginalised groups and groups at risk, right to information, right to privacy and data protection, and gender equality. In its paper, WOUGNET explores the digital gender divide and its impact on gender inequalities in Uganda. To remedy these structural disparities, WOUGNET highlights key actions and recommendations for bridging the digital gender gap that government leaders, civil society and other relevant stakeholders should consider in ongoing debates and processes for the adoption and amendment of internet-related policies. The paper emphasises the importance of incorporating a gender lens in understanding the effects of public policies on women’s daily lives in Uganda. The study was supported by the African Declaration on Internet Rights and Freedoms Strategic Advocacy Fund.

Feature Image: Courtesy of Pickist.com

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The application of the 5th principle of the African Declaration on Internet Rights and Freedoms in laws and regulations in Cameroon

This study by PROTEGE QV assesses the application of the African Declaration on Internet Rights and Freedoms principle on freedom of assembly and association on the internet in Cameroon. As part of the study, the organisation conducted an online survey and also had a broad consultation with key stakeholders during a workshop to explore the possibility of integrating the use of and access to the internet in Cameroon’s statutes with a particular focus on freedom of association and assembly. This report thus emphasises the urgent need for Cameroon to implement policies and legal frameworks that will promote human rights online in the current digital environment. Recommendations point to the steps that stakeholders can take that are compatible with an existing legal framework governing the exercise of association and assembly rights in the digital age. The study was supported by the AfDec Strategic Advocacy Fund.

 

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Protege QV

 

Researchers:

Dr Lionel Amahata Kiabega, Serge Daho, Sylvie Siyam, Avis Momemi, Lionelle Tchingoua

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Data Protection Africa: A tool for information, advocacy and activism in Africa

Phase 1 of Data Protection Africa (DPA) has launched! DPA is an online open-access portal that provides information on data protection laws and access to data protection authorities in 31 African countries. The portal also lists digital rights organisations which work in the data protection space in Africa. Phase 2 is coming soon.

 

A full review of data protection laws in 31 African countries Africa is undergoing a digital transformation, and while this presents exciting and innovative opportunities, there is a corresponding and pressing need for appropriate data protection on the continent. Unfortunately, data protection is largely unregulated in Africa, putting vulnerable populations at a risk. In response to the need to better understand the data protection landscape in Africa, ALT Advisory has created DPA, a resource for individuals, activists and communities to access information and knowledge which will enable them to exercise their rights and to advocate to progressively realise and develop privacy rights. DPA seeks to become a platform for activism in the face of digital threats.

The DPA portal presently provides a full review of data protection laws in 31 African countries, each with a factsheet on the applicable laws, as well as relevant constitutional provisions. The factsheets provide information on:

  • What constitutes personal information in a particular jurisdiction
  • How that information should be collected and processed
  • How that data can be transferred across borders
  • What breach notifications apply in a jurisdiction if data is leaked to an unauthorised third party.
  • What steps can be taken to remedy such breaches, including the contact information of operational data protection authorities.

Also available through the portal is a list of digital rights organisations which work in the data protection space in Africa.

Phase 2 of DPA, which is presently in development, will see the review of all country factsheets, the introduction of a new factsheet on the Togolese Republic, a running record of data protection jurisprudence in Africa, and an overview of sub-regional data protection trends. Phase 2 will also incorporate contact functionality which will allow DPA users to file complaints with data protection authorities from the portal.

You can access the site here.

This piece was written by Tshepiso Hadebe, of ALT Advisory. DPA is a special project that has been developed by ALT Advisory with the support of a grant from the Strategic Advocacy Fund, as part of the project “Securing human rights online in Africa through a strong and active ‘African Declaration on Internet Rights and Freedoms’ network”.

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Africa in urgent need of a homegrown online rights strategy

Participants at the 2019 Digital Rights and Inclusion Forum in Lagos, Nigeria agreed that the African Declaration on Internet Rights and Freedoms is a good starting point for the protection and promotion of online rights and freedoms on the continent, which are increasingly under threat. In the session, titled “Consolidating a pan-African approach to building an open and useful internet in Africa”, participants noted that not only had there been an increase in violations against citizens’ access to and use of the internet across the continent, but that this trend was worsening. This is particularly so as governments continue to enact repressive policy and legislation and apply extrajudicial means to limit freedoms online.

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Disentangling the broadband divide in Rwanda: supply-side vs demand-side

This is a policy brief to assess pricing trends in Rwanda, a country which performs pretty well on pricing index but still has low internet uptake. To figure out why, Research ICT Africa is conducting a household, individual and business survey in Rwanda as well as Nigeria, South Africa, Tanzania and Mozambique. More countries will be added on as the year progresses.

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Overcoming gender-based digital exclusion in northern Nigeria: A strategy document

By Center for Information Technology and Development (CITAD), December 2016

Although in a number of countries the gender dimension of the digital divide has been bridged, this is not so in Nigeria where there is huge differential between men and women in terms of access and use of the internet. Within the country, it is worse in the states in the northern parts of the country. This is due to a number of factors including culture, religion, education and attitude.

In an effort to understand this and to develop appropriate strategies for digital inclusion of women in the region, CITAD undertook a pilot research aimed to understand the factors that inhibit the effective use of the internet by women in the north. This paper is part of the research undertaken in Bauchi and Keno, with support of APC, which funded the project with a subgrant.

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State of Internet Freedom in Africa 2016 - Case Studies from Select Countries on Strategies African Governments Use to Stifle Citizens’ Digital Rights

The report presents the findings of a study on what governments are doing to inhibit citizens’ access to ICT, for example content blocks, censorship, filtering, infrastructure control, law-making, court cases; how governments are using ICT activity and data to monitor citizens; and how government bodies and functionaries are using propaganda, impersonation, threats, cloning, and other tactics to shape online content in their favour.

Full country reports are available for ten countries: Burundi, Democratic Republic of Congo, Ethiopia, Kenya, Rwanda, Somalia, Tanzania, Uganda, Zambia and Zimbabwe. The research was conducted as part of CIPESA’s OpenNet Africa initiative (www.opennetafrica.org), which monitors and promotes internet freedom in Africa.

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Assessing the Implementation of Information Communication Technology (ICT) for Sustainable Development in NGOs in Zimbabwe

Over the past years, Non-Governmental Organizations (NGOs) have been actively engaging in local, regional, national and international matters with or against the public and private sectors ever since their genesis. This paper examines the role of NGOs in Zimbabwe by analyzing the dynamics of ICT on NGO relations and their direct causal effects on the promotion of sustainable development. Through a qualitative secondary study approach which was enabled through a content analysis, the paper illustrates various factors affecting the sustainability of ICT for NGOs in Zimbabwe. The paper explores the challenges being faced by NGOs in trying to maintain sustainable
development through the usage of ICT and web-enhanced tools in Zimbabwe. The paper establishes that government interference, financial instability, poor infrastructure, low technical expertise among citizens, effects of HIV/AIDS, desire to maintain status quo constrained the implementation of ICT by NGOs to achieve sustainable development.

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Stakeholder Report Universal Periodic Review 26th Session – Uganda

This is a joint stakeholder contribution to the second cycle of the Universal Periodic Review (UPR) mechanism for Uganda. It focuses on women’s rights and the internet in Uganda. It explores the extent of implementation of the recommendations made in the previous cycle of the UPR and also identifies emerging concerns in Uganda regarding women’s rights online.

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