Don’t ever do these three things

According to the constitution, women have the right to freedom of association for “any cause or purpose,” or whatever they deem to be significant. The explicit division of CSOs into those that can advance women’s rights and those that cannot restrict Ethiopian women’s ability to band together for any cause or goal undermines the original intent of the constitution.

The right to freedom of association is protected by article 10 of the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights (ICCPR), to which Ethiopia is a party. According to the FDRE constitution, agreements that Ethiopia has ratified become a component of the legal system. Ethiopia’s commitment to respect human rights under the ICCPR is thus violated by the CSP.

There are claims that the claw-back clauses in the Ethiopian constitution restrict the utilization of fundamental rights, such as the freedom of association. The CSP’s scope is not constrained, though. It also covers women’s rights groups that operate in accordance with the constitution and aren’t engaged in “illegally subverting constitutional order,” as the constitution defines it. Consequently, the CSP is and has been unconstitutional for a long time.

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