The Human Truth Foundation

Human Rights and Freedom in Gambia

By Vexen Crabtree 2018


Comments:
FB, LJ

#equality #freedom #gambia #human_rights #politics #tolerance

Gambia
Republic of The Gambia

[Country Profile Page]
StatusIndependent State
CapitalBanjul
Land Area 10 120km21
LocationAfrica
Population1.8m (2011)2
Life Expectancy60.46yrs (2017)3
GNI$1 541 (2017)4
ISO3166-1 CodesGM, GMB, 2705
Internet Domain.gm6
CurrencyDalasi (GMD)7
Telephone+2208

The Gambia is very poor at ensuring human rights and freedom compared to the rest of the world, and it has cultural issues when it comes to tolerance and equality. The Gambia does better than average in commentary from Human Rights Watch9 and in its Global Peace Index rating10. But unfortunately The Gambia gets most other things wrong. It does worse than average in eliminating modern slavery11, its nominal commitment to Human Rights12, supporting personal, civil & economic freedoms13, fighting corruption14, supporting press freedom15 and in LGBT equality16. And finally, it falls into the bottom 20 in opposing gender inequality17. Human rights in Gambia have greatly improved from 2017, since President Yahya Jammeh has been replaced with Adama Barrow and an era of authoritarian abuse is ending.18. Widespread reforms in multiple sectors have been instigated to support human rights, strengthen the judiciary and ensure media freedom18. There is still a lot of work to do.


1. Politics and Freedom

#burundi #corruption #eritrea #france #freedom #Gambia #human_development #human_rights #indonesia #mass_media #peace #politics #slavery

Corruption (2012-2016)14
Pos.Higher is better
Avg Score14
1Denmark90.8
2New Zealand90.6
3Finland89.4
...
127Mauritania29.8
128Guyana29.6
129Pakistan29.2
130Gambia29.0
131Honduras28.8
132Nepal28.6
133Azerbaijan28.6
134Madagascar28.4
World Avg43.05
q=176.
Global Peace Index (2012)10
Pos.Lower is better10
1Iceland1.11
2New Zealand1.24
3Denmark1.24
...
71Ukraine1.95
72Tunisia1.96
73Cyprus1.96
74Gambia1.96
75Gabon1.97
76Paraguay1.97
77Greece1.98
78Senegal1.99
World Avg2.02
q=157.
Human Rights Watch Comments (2017)9
Pos.Higher is better
Score9
1UK9
2France9
3Germany9
...
30Japan3
31Australia3
32Hungary3
33Gambia2
34Liechtenstein2
35Chile2
36Paraguay1
37Costa Rica1
World Avg-1.9
q=123.

Nominal Commitment to HR (2009)12
Pos.Higher is better
Treaties12
1Argentina24
2Chile23
3Costa Rica23
...
129Congo, (Brazzaville)13
130Ivory Coast13
131Afghanistan13
132Gambia13
133Equatorial Guinea13
134Antigua & Barbuda13
135Nepal13
136Djibouti13
World Avg15.1
q=194.
Personal, Civil & Economic Freedom (2014)13
Pos.Lower is better
Rank13
1Hong Kong1
2Switzerland2
3New Zealand3
...
122Burundi122
123Tunisia123
124Mali124
125Gambia125
126Cameroon126
127Guyana126
128Vietnam128
129Azerbaijan128
World Avg79.7
q=159.
Press Freedom (2013)15
Pos.Lower is better15
1Finland638
2Netherlands648
3Norway652
...
148Singapore4343
149Iraq4467
150Myanmar (Burma)4471
151Gambia4509
152Mexico4530
153Turkey4656
154Swaziland4676
155Azerbaijan4773
World Avg3249
q=178.

Slavery (2018)11
Pos.Lower is better
% Victims11
1Japan0.03
2Canada0.05
3Taiwan0.05
...
106Venezuela0.56
107Haiti0.56
108Zambia0.57
109Gambia0.58
110Lithuania0.58
111Ivory Coast0.59
112Montenegro0.59
113Nepal0.60
World Avg0.65
q=167.

The taking of slaves has been an unwholesome feature of Human cultures since prehistory19. Private households and national endeavours have frequently been augmented with the use of slaves. The Egyptian and Roman empires both thrived on them for both purposes. Aside from labourers they are often abused sexually by their owners and their owners' friends20. The era of colonialism and the beginnings of globalisation changed nothing: the imprisonment and forced movements of labour continued to destroy many lives except that new justifications were invented based on Christian doctrine and the effort to convert non-Christians. By 1786 over 12 million slaves had been extracted from Africa and sent to colonial labour camps, with a truly atrocious condition of life21. But they were not the only ones to blame; in Africa internal nations such as the Asantes sold and bought tens of thousands of slaves22.

The abolition of the slave trade was a long and slow process. Until a relatively modern time, even philosophers, religious leaders and those concerned with ethics justified, or ignored, the problem of slavery23. The first abolitionists were always the slaves themselves. Their protests and rebellions caused the industry to become too expensive to continue. After that, it was the economic costs of maintain slave colonies that led the British to reject and then oppose the slave trade globally. Finally, the enlightenment-era thinkers of France encouraged moral and ethical thinking including the declaration of the inherent value of human life and human dignity24. A long-overdue wave of compassionate and conscientious movements swept across the West, eliminating public support for slavery, until the industries and churches that supported it had no choice but to back down.

'Modern slavery' includes forced labour (often of the under-age), debt bondage (especially generational), sexual slavery, chattel slavery and other forms of abuse, some of which can be surprisingly difficult to detect, but often target those fleeing from warzones and the vulnerable.25. Some industries (diamond, clothing, coal) from some countries (Burundi11, Eritrea11, Indonesia26) are a particular concern. The Walk Free Foundation, say that in 2016, 40.3 million people were living in modern slavery27.

2. Gender Equality

#Gambia #gender #misogyny #politics #women

Gender Inequality (2015)17
Pos.Lower is better17
1Switzerland0.04
2Denmark0.04
3Netherlands0.04
...
145Malawi0.61
146Burkina Faso0.62
147Mauritania0.63
148Gambia0.64
149Central African Rep.0.65
150Liberia0.65
151Sierra Leone0.65
152Tonga0.66
World Avg0.36
q=159.

Gender inequality is not a necessary part of early human development. Although a separation of roles is almost universal due to different strengths between the genders, this does not have to mean that women are subdued, and, such patriarchialism is not universal in ancient history. Those cultures and peoples who shed, or never developed, the idea that mankind ought to dominate womankind, are better cultures and peoples than those who, even today, cling violently to those mores.

Year Women Can Vote28
Pos.Lower is better
Year28
1New Zealand1893
2Australia1902
3Finland1906
...
124Tanzania1959
125Tonga1960
126Cyprus1960
127Gambia1960
128El Salvador1961
129Rwanda1961
130Mauritania1961
131Burundi1961
World Avg1930
q=189.

The Gambia is an unequal country, with male rights dominating those of women.

See:

3. LGBT Equality and Tolerance

#equality #Gambia #homosexuality #human_rights #intolerance #sexuality #tolerance

LGBT Equality (2017)16
Pos.Higher is better
Score16
1Netherlands103
2Belgium90
3Sweden86
...
152Tanzania-17
153Iran-19
154Malaysia-19
155Gambia-19
156Maldives-19
157Afghanistan-19
158Liberia-20
159Bhutan-20
World Avg12.6
q=196.

Discrimination against Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender (LGBT) folk is rife across the world. Legal restrictions co-exist alongside social stigmatisation and physical violence29. LGBT tolerance and equal rights have been fought for country-by-country across the world, often against tightly entrenched cultural and religious opposition. Adult consensual sexual activity is a Human Right, protected by privacy laws30. Despite this, homosexual activity is outlawed in around 80 countries29. The Social & Moral LGBT Equality Index was created to compare countries and regions, granting points to each country for a variety of factors including how long gay sex has been criminalized and the extent of LGBT legal rights. Graded negative points are given for criminality of homosexuality, unequal ages of consent, legal punishments and for not signing international accords on LGBT tolerance. The signs in many developed countries are positive, and things are gradually improving. Europe is by far the least prejudiced region (Scandinavia in particular being exemplary). The Middle East and then Africa are the least morally developed, where cultural bias goes hand-in-hand with state intolerance, all too often including physical violence.

The prospects for LGBT folk have greatly improved since 2017, when President Yahya Jammeh was replaced with Adama Barrow, who "has promised not to prosecute same-sex couplesfor consensual sexual acts, which sharply contrasted with Jammeh´s hate-filled rhetoric [...] however, the government has not repealed laws that criminalize same-sex conduct, including an October 2014 law that imposes sentences of up to life in prison for “aggravated homosexuality” offenses"18.

4. Gambia Overall National and Social Development

#Gambia #human_development

Social & Moral
Development Index
31
Pos.Higher is better
Points31
1Denmark84.0
2Sweden83.9
3Finland83.5
...
136Sao Tome & Principe46.9
137Saudi Arabia46.8
138Haiti46.5
139Gambia46.4
140Laos46.0
141Uganda45.8
142Tonga45.6
143Egypt45.5
144Nauru45.4
World Avg53.8
q=198.

The Social and Moral Development Index concentrates on moral issues and human rights, violence, public health, equality, tolerance, freedom and effectiveness in climate change mitigation and environmentalism, and on some technological issues. A country scores higher for achieving well in those areas, and for sustaining that achievement in the long term. Those countries towards the top of this index can truly said to be setting good examples and leading humankind onwards into a bright, humane, and free future. See: What is the Best Country in the World? An Index of Morality, Conscience and Good Life.

Current edition: 2018 Dec 26
http://www.humantruth.info/gambia_human_rights_and_freedom.html
Parent page: Gambia (Republic of The Gambia)

All #tags used on this page - click for more:

#burundi #corruption #equality #eritrea #france #freedom #gambia #gender #homosexuality #human_development #human_rights #indonesia #intolerance #mass_media #misogyny #peace #politics #sexuality #slavery #tolerance #women

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References: (What's this?)

Book Cover

Book Cover

Casely-Hayford, Gus
(2012) The Lost Kingdoms of Africa. Published by Bantram Press. A hardback book.

Crabtree, Vexen
(2019) "What is the Best Country in the World? An Index of Morality, Conscience and Good Life" (2019). Accessed 2019 Jan 13.

Donnelly, Jack
(2013) Universal Human Rights in Theory and Practice. 3rd edition. Published by Cornell University Press.

The Fraser Institute
(2016) The Human Freedom Index. Published by The Cato Institute, The Fraser Institute and the Friedrich Naumann Foundation for Freedom. Covers data up to 2014. On www.fraserinstitute.org/.../human-freedom-index-2016.

Human Rights Watch
(2018) World Report 2018. Covering the events of 2017.

Klein, Naomi
(2004) No Logo. Originally published 2000, HarperCollins, London, UK. A paperback book.

McCall, Andrew
(1979) The Medieval Underworld. 2004 edition. Published by Sutton Publishing. A paperback book.

Thomson, Oliver
(1993) A History of Sin. Published by Canongate Press. A hardback book.

United Nations
(2011) Human Development Report. Published by the UN Development Programme. This edition had the theme of Sustainability and Equity: A Better Future for All. Available on hdr.undp.org/... UN Development Program: About the Human Development Index.
(2017) Human Development Report. Published by the UN Development Programme. Data for 2015. Available on hdr.undp.org/.

Walk Free Foundation
(2018) Global Slavery Index. Published on www.walkfreefoundation.org/.

Footnotes

  1. World Bank data on data.worldbank.org accessed 2013 Nov 04.^
  2. UN (2011) .^
  3. UN (2017). Table 1.^
  4. UN (2017). Gross National Income, per person. Table 1.^
  5. International Standards Organisation (ISO) standard ISO3166-1, on www.iso.org, accessed 2013 May 01.^
  6. Top level domains (TLDs) are managed by the Internet Assigned Numbers Authority (IANA) on www.iana.org.^
  7. According to ISO4217.^
  8. According to ITU-T.^
  9. Human Rights Watch (2018). Negative and positive comments have been added to create a score for each country covered in the report.^^
  10. ^^
  11. Walk Free Foundation (2018) .^^
  12. Max possible=24. Total amount of treaties ratified. Nominal Commitment to Human Rights report published by UCL School of Public Policy, London, UK, at ucl.ac.uk/spp/research/research-projects/nchr accessed 2011 Apr 30.^^
  13. Fraser Institute, the (2016). Covers data for 2014.^^
  14. Transparency International Corruption Perceptions Index (2017). Accessed 2017 Dec 30. The scores given are the TI average for the years 2012-2016.^^
  15. Reporters Without Borders Report "2013 World Press Freedom Index: Dashed hopes after spring" at fr.rsf.org/.../classement_2013_gb-bd.pdf accessed 2013 Feb.^^
  16. Sources:^^
  17. UN (2017). Table 5. Lower is better.^^
  18. Human Rights Watch (2018). p235-240.^^
  19. Thomson (1993). p28.^
  20. McCall (1979). p180.^
  21. Thomson (1993). p166.^
  22. Casely-Hayford (2012). p253.^
  23. Thomson (1993). p31.^
  24. Thomson (1993). p199.^
  25. Thomson (1993). p28-29.^
  26. Klein (2004) .^
  27. Walk Free Foundation (2018). p2.^
  28. "What is the Best Country in the World? An Index of Morality, Conscience and Good Life: 2.9. Women Stand for Election & Vote" by Vexen Crabtree (2019)^
  29. Donnelly (2013). Chapter 16 "Nondiscrimination for All: The Case of Sexual Minorities" p278.^
  30. Donnelly (2013). Chapter 16 "Nondiscrimination for All: The Case of Sexual Minorities" p289. According to a 1992 ruling of the Human Rights Committee, which declared that 'it is undisputed that adult consensual sexual activity in private is covered by the concept of privacy' when discussing Article 17 of the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights. See Human Rights Committee, Communication 488/1992, paragraph 8.2.^
  31. "What is the Best Country in the World? An Index of Morality, Conscience and Good Life" by Vexen Crabtree (2019)^

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