Mrs. Soyata Maiga, Chairperson of the Board of Directors of Media Foundation for West Africa (MFWA) has been elected a Commissionner of the African Commission on Human and Peoples’ Rights for a six-year term.
Mrs. Maiga is one of the five new Commissioners who were elected at the 11th Ordinary Session of the Executive Council in line with the just ended 9th Africa Union Summit in Accra, Ghana.
Fifteen candidates drawn from the African Union Member-States competed for a six-year mandate on the one hand, and a two-year mandate on the other.
Four of the fifteen candidates were elected for a six year mandate, while the fifth candidate was elected for a two year mandate. They will join six other commissioners to constitute the eleven commissioners.
Soyata brings to the Commission several years of experience as a human rights activist and a strong advocate of the promotion and protection of rights including free expression and media rights.
A former Vice President of the Malian Association of Lawyers, Mrs. Maiga is currently a private legal practitioner and a member of the MFWA’s Network of Lawyers for the Defence of Journalists in West Africa. She was among a team of lawyers who defended four journalists in Bamako recently. The journalists were arrested and tried over the publication of an essay by a high school student about a fictional president who impregnated his girlfriend.