AU Urges Member States to Ratify Malabo Convention

The African Union Commission urged member states to ratify the Malabo Convention, which is a legal framework for cyber-security and personal data protection.

AU Commission has organized the first forum on cybercrime in Africa, which is running from 16-18 October, 2018 in Addis Ababa.

The forum is deliberating on the creation of continental platform to find ways of fighting against cybercrime and illicit use of internet information and technologies.

During the opening session of the forum, AU Commissioner for Infrastructure and Energy Dr. Amani ABOU-ZEID has called member countries of the African Union for immediate ratification of the Malabo Convention.

The Malabo Convention, which was adopted by Heads of States and Governments of African Union in 2014, aims at defining the objectives and broad orientations of the Information Society in Africa and strengthening existing legislations on Information and Communication Technologies (ICTs) of Member States.

However, it does not come into effect since the required member states failed to approve it in their respective parliaments.

“Only three countries have ratified after its adoption, but the ratification of thirteen more member states are required to enter into force,” the Commissioner said.

The INTERPOL report shows that Africa losses 2 billion USD in 2016 which increased to 3.5 billion USD in 2017.

In light of this, Amani underscored on the utmost importance of adopting a national strategic framework in response to the increasing threat posed by cybercrime.

However, she said only eleven African countries have adopted national cybercrime law.

“Cybercrime is a global scourge,” she stressed on the indispensability of working regionally and internationally in coordinated manner to derail the threat.

The three-day forum, which will wrap up tomorrow, is expected to strengthen regional mechanisms on criminal justice and increase the capacity of criminal law investigators.

The forum brings together up to 300 participants from AU member states, regional and international organizations.