Who we are:
New African is a grassroots nongovernmental organization that fights for human rights in central Africa. One of our core aims is to expose and help mitigate practices of bad governance endemic to the region.
Much of our work is focused on the Democratic Republic of Congo [DRC] and its northern neighbor Central African Republic [CAR], two nations which continue to experience conflict and political instability. We are the human rights watchdogs who keep a vigilant eye on local politicians, their cronies, and the factions who illicitly benefit from their nationís wealth at the expense of the citizenry.
Our activists venture into the dark underbelly of central African politics to capture primary source evidence of human rights violations, bad governance, corruption, bribery, embezzlement, tenderpreneurship, and other insidious practices that prevent African nations from reaching their fullest potential.
Due to threat of physical harm posed by the political classes and their inner circles, all our administrative work is handled from New African's de facto headquarters in Paris, where we are safe to expose our work beyond the scope of local-level censorship.
Our team on the ground is forced to operate covertly and with aliases when collecting, transferring, and exposing important information pertaining to human rights violations as they have a need to protect their identities and avoid punishment - death of which is just one example.
Regardless of risk, we remain dutifully committed to stamping out human rights violations and corruption in
Central Africa and improving the conditions for the people who live in fear daily, monthly and yearly.
What we do:
We are comprised of locals from the DRC and CAR, and our efforts are bolstered by a network of connections that we maintain in France.
Our core mission is to (1) explain the concepts of human rights and corruption to the citizenry, (2) expose egregious acts of violence committed by the ruling elite, and (3) fight for human rights and work towards mitigating the effects of corruption while encouraging a New African way forward in which our nations can transform together peacefully and adopt better modes of governance. To this end, we regularly host lectures that comprehensively cover the basics of human rights and advocate for democracy, liberty, freedom and lasting peace. We also partner with other social movements who work alongside us and help get our message across to the people.
We are committed to unveiling bad practices and calling the ruling elite to account in the interests of forging a better, more peaceful and more prosperous central Africa for all its people.
New African is reachable via any of the avenues appearing . Please do not hesitate to establish contact with us should you have any queries or comments. We would also love to hear from you should you bear information or wish to break a story pertaining to central African human rights violations or corruption.
Paris Office -
Phone: (+33) 09 74 59 14 75
Address: 28 Rue l`Amiral Hamelin , 75016 , Paris , France.
THE NEW AFRICAN WAY
A central aim of New African is to explain the concepts of human rights and corruption to the people living in DRC, CAR, and other central African nations, many of whom continue to live with a perpetual fear of violence and poverty. Transformative change that stamps out both human rights violations and corruption and puts African nations on the path to improved governance requires the participation of informed populations, thus our struggle begins here.
Explaining Human Rights Violations
Human rights are fundamental and basic rights that belong to every individual. In its most exalted sense, such rights are meant to be inherent to all human beings regardless of race, gender, nationality, religion, or any other discriminatory characteristic.
Human rights are entitlements bestowed upon all of us, without discrimination and without exception. The guarantee of these rights is usually grounded in treaty law and customary international law which attempts to bend illiberal governments around the world into compliance with a set of predetermined delineations.
Human rights laws are based on the principle of universality and inalienability, and were first described in the 1948 Universal Declaration of Human Rights. Countries occupying a realist world with no overarching supranational body are expected to extol and protect human rights, especially when these basic freedoms are violated. However, we see that not only do many countries contravene their commitment to international human rights law, but very few come to the aid of others when human rights are violated. This has created a vicious circle of violence in central Africa that has been permitted to go on without challenge for decades.
Thus, even though states are in theory obligated to step in as a duty under international law to protect and defend human rights, many times they fail to do so for multitudinous reasons. Even more worrying, many individual governments around the world continue to repress their populations and subject them to violence and a life marked by fear. Such infringements on basic human rights are ongoing and commonplace, and it is New African's mission to try and lessen the degree to which they impact central African populations.
Corruption, in its most straightforward sense, is defined as "dishonest or fraudulent conduct by those in power". In layman's terms, it is the flagrant abuse of power for individual gain at the expense of the citizenry. It can take several forms including political, petty, and grand - all of which are connected.
Political corruption most notably manifests itself in the manipulation of a nation's laws, policies, and institutions that fall prey to a small predatory class. These ruling individuals wield their clout for nefarious purposes, such as accruing state resources or financing certain projects that produce gainful kickbacks, while simultaneously augmenting their powerful positions and wealth.
Petty corruption is the abuse of power by low- and mid-level bureaucrats that accept bribes from individuals who are trying to secure certain goods and services, advance socially, avoid punishment, or achieve some other intrinsically advantageous outcome that runs contrary to the law and morality.
Grand corruption can be viewed as petty corruption on a state-wide basis. It manifests itself in corrosive acts committed by the ruling elite that bend the rules, distort policies, and ultimately undercut the stateís underlying functionality. This elite and their close cadre of family and friends benefit directly at the expense of the people and the greater public good, and the entire nation takes a macroeconomic blow in the process which leaves everybody but the elite worse off.
Corruption in all its forms is insidious, destructive, vicious and morally depraved. It also happens to be a self-fulfilling prophecy in African governments. It is one of our central aims to expose and mitigate corruption wherever it rears its ugly head, as well as unite the citizenry against it in the interests of a more productive and prosperous New African way forward.
Exposing Human Rights Violations
Exposing human rights violations is a complicated and dangerous affair. To do so effectively, we have managed to recruit insiders, brave statesmen who sympathize with our cause and want to see violent factions that they are forced to work alongside ousted from government.
These true statesmen monitor directives emanating from the top-tier of the political structure and have several times been able to give us advanced warning of crackdowns or violently repressive policies that are about to be meted out on specific groups or individuals.
This information provides New African with a golden opportunity to arrive at the proposed scene before any action has taken place. In ideal situations, we can forewarn the victims about the impending danger they're in, and in less than ideal situations we are able to log the violations as they take place using a mix of audio and visual recording equipment. The evidence captured is then sent to France for processing before being sent back to us for local use.
Our team is constantly faced with dangerous situations and takes on considerable risk because we believe that our cause is a vital one.
Following our efforts to explain corruption to the citizenry and teaching them how to spot it in practice, we encourage the people to take note of acts of it and report back to us. Once we receive the information, we investigate the veracity of the claims before exposing those involved in an attempt to rectify their actions, and in severe cases, encouraging legal action against the perpetrators.
We also boast a small and dedicated team of corruption hunters who are tasked with exposing illicit acts at the top-most levels of government. These brave individuals act covertly as to avoid punishment which would entail grievous bodily harm or death if theyíre caught. Each investigation of this type can take several weeks to plan and several months or even years to complete before the proper evidence has been obtained and the web of public deception unveiled.
Exposing corruption has the effect of compelling the citizenry to pay attention to the chicanery taking place at the highest levels of government, and strengthens their commitment to identifying it and working actively towards stamping out any vestige of it.
Exposing human rights violations and corruption of all types are the follow-on step once both concepts have been broached and understood in their respective contexts. New African believes that sunlight is the best disinfectant and in bringing these acts into the public spotlight it is hoped that the perpetrators will be prosecuted and new standards of accountability will be set.
Mitigation is the process by which individuals and groups act in unison to reduce the severity and the intensity of human rights abuses and the rolling effects of corruption. New African is well-aware that regional mitigation is a tough sell, yet that does not prevent us from constantly working towards finding new solutions to the issues that our countries continue to face. We believe in a step-by-step approach that will eventually result in transformative change.
Mitigating Human Rights Violations
Human rights violations and outright abuses remain commonplace throughout the African continent, yet seem to converge on the center. The central bloc- DRC, CAR, South Sudan and Uganda, among others, are all involved in varying degrees of human rights violations. Mitigating these issues is of utmost importance as lives are hanging in the balance.
Mitigating violations and abuses has its roots in the citizenry properly understanding what constitutes a human right. Once the basics are understood, the populations have gained a clearer understanding as to what is considered acceptable and what is not.
From this new vantage point, mitigation of violent acts on the individual and group levels can begin. Brutal acts are seldom carried out in a vacuum, and prefer to be carried out in secret. Exposing these acts to the public and the world at large has the effect of bringing condemnation down on the perpetrators and in exceptional cases can lead to successful prosecution.
It is thus imperative to expose and log as many instances of human rights violations as possible occurring in the region, and strive towards fostering lasting peaceful solutions.
Corruption that is endemic to African governments is mitigated firstly by explaining its effects to the people and secondly by teaching them to identify and expose it.
Our grassroots movement puts the people first when it comes to battling the corrupt practices of the ruling elite.
We are a nongovernmental organization that is committed to a New African way forward, one that is marked by progress, prosperity, peace and practical governance that benefits the citizenry and not just the small ruling elite.
We believe in tailoring our efforts when educating the local populations, so that we can foster a robust understanding of corruption and forge their will to react when cases are brought to light.
Educating about corruptionís effects and continuing to expose the acts themselves is the best way to mitigate corruption in the short term, and will ultimately have the long-term effect of driving down incentives to commit such acts.
The more accountability, the less corruption, the better for the people, and the more prosperous the nation.
Together we stand united against corruption and for transformative change.