Torture and other forms of ill-treatment is still a widespread problem in most parts of the African continent.
The prevalence of torture is commonly attributed to lack of training and information, impunity, discrimination, dysfunctional judicial systems, lack of monitoring and advisory mechanisms, corruption and deficiencies in governance and the rule of law, amongst others.
The APT has engaged in the prevention of torture in Africa since 1995, when it was granted observer status with the African Commission on Human and Peoples Rights. Since then the APT has contributed to the development of a regional dynamic, mobilizing all available energies towards an effective prevention of torture and ill-treatment on the continent.
In particular, the APT supports national torture prevention initiatives by providing advice and technical assistance in the implementation of relevant international human rights instruments and by facilitating a sustained interaction between relevant actors including through promotion of exchange visits, cooperation and sharing of good practices. This catalyst role has resulted in many positive achievements such as the adoption of the Robben Island Guidelines for the Prohibition and Prevention of Torture in Africa (RIG) by the African Commission in 2002 and the establishment of the Committee for the Prevention of Torture in Africa (CPTA).