IRI DRC advocacy contributes to historic adoption of law protecting rights of Pygmy communities

IRI DRC engaged in a months-long campaign advocating for the adoption of a new law recognizing the rights of Pygmy people in the country. Advocacy efforts included video spots of senior religious leaders calling for adoption of the law, as well as a policy paper and joint statement on behalf of IRI DRC and religious leaders in the country arguing for why securing the rights of Pygmy people is a shared moral responsibility.  The videos can be seen here.  This achievement rewards a struggle that began more than a decade ago and was guided by leaders of the indigenous movement, in collaboration with local and national authorities and NGOs. The commitment, dedication and leadership of indigenous organizations such as DGPA, REPALEF, LYNAPICO, and PIDP were decisive in achieving this major result, as was the advocacy of IRI DRC. The law for the protection and promotion of indigenous peoples was adopted on April 7th with several IRI DRC members present during the process. The adoption was almost unanimous, with all but one member of parliament voting against it. The Senate will examine the text in the coming weeks before it is promulgated by the President of the Republic. This is a milestone as DRC will soon become the second African country to have legislation in favour of indigenous peoples.