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Description : In 2020, the African Human Rights Law Journal (AHRLJ or Journal) celebrates 20 years since it first was published. The AHRLJ is the only peer-reviewed journal focused on human rights-related topics of relevance to Africa, Africans and scholars of Africa. It is a time for celebration. Since 2001, two issues of the AHRLJ have appeared every year. Initially published by Juta, in Cape Town, South Africa, in 2013 it became as an open-access journal published by the Pretoria University Law Press (PULP). PULP is a non-profit open-access publisher focused on advancing African scholarship. The AHRLJ contains peer-reviewed articles and ‘recent developments’, discussing the latest court decisions and legal developments in the African Union (AU) and regional economic communities. It contains brief discussions of recently-published books. With a total of 517 contributions in 40 issues (436 articles and 81 ‘recent developments’; not counting ‘book reviews’), on average the AHRLJ contains around 13 contributions per issue. The AHRLJ is accredited with the International Bibliography of the Social Sciences (IBSS) and the South African Department of Higher Education, Science and Innovation, and appears in a number of open access portals, including AfricanLii, the Directory of Open Access Journals and SciELO. Over the 20 years of its existence, many significant articles appeared in the AHRLJ. According to Google Scholar the mostcited articles that have appeared in the Journal over this period are (i) T Metz ‘Ubuntu as a moral theory and human rights in South Africa’ (2011) 11 African Human Rights Law Journal 532-559 (with 273 citations); (ii) D Cornell and K van Marle ‘Exploring ubuntu: Tentative reflections’ (2005) 5 African Human Rights Law Journal 195- 220 (with 97 citations); (iii) S Tamale ‘Exploring the contours of African sexualities: Religion, law and power’ (2014) 14 African Human Rights Law Journal 150-177 (with 85 citations); K Kindiki ‘The normative and institutional framework of the African Union relating to the protection of human rights and the maintenance of international peace and security: A critical appraisal’ (2003) 3 African Human Rights Law Journal 97-117 (with 59 citations); and T Kaime ‘The Convention on the Rights of the Child and the cultural legitimacy of children’s rights in Africa: Some reflections’ (2005) 5 African Human Rights Law Journal 221-238) (with 54 citations). This occasion allows some perspective on the role that the Journal has played over the past 20 years. It is fair to say that the AHRLJ contributed towards strengthening indigenous African scholarship, in general, and human rights-related themes, specifically. Before the Journal there was no academic ‘outlet’ devoted to human rights in the broader African context. Both in quantity and in quality the Journal has left its mark on the landscape of scholarly journals. The AHRLJ has provided a forum for African voices, including those that needed to be ‘fine-tuned’. Different from many other peerreviewed journals, the AHRLJ has seen it as its responsibility to nurture emerging but not yet fully-flourishing talent. This approach allowed younger and emerging scholars to be guided to sharpen their skills and find their scholarly voices. The AHRLJ has evolved in tandem with the African regional human rights system, in a dialogic relationship characterised by constructive criticism. When the Journal was first published in 2001, the Protocol on the Establishment of an African Court on Human and Peoples’ Rights (African Court Protocol) was not yet in force. Over the years the Journal tracked the evolution of the African Court on Human and Peoples’ Rights (African Court) from a faltering start, through a phase when it increasingly expressed itself in an emerging jurisprudence, to the current situation of push-back by states signalled by the withdrawal by four states of their acceptance of the Court’s direct individual access jurisdiction. The same is largely true for the African Committee of Experts on the Rights and Welfare of the Child (African Children’s Committee). It was in 2001 that the AU elected the first members of this Committee. It first met in 2002, and its first decade or so was lackluster. The Committee examined its first state report only in November 2008, and decided its first communication in March 2011. Articles by authors such as Mezmur and Sloth-Nielsen, who also served as members of the Committee, and Lloyd, placed the spotlight on the work of the Committee. Initially, these articles primarily served to describe and provide information that otherwise was largely inaccessible, but over time they increasingly provided a critical gaze and contributed to the constructive evolution of the Committee’s exercise of its mandate. By 2011 the African Commission on Human and Peoples’ Rights (African Commission) was already quite well established, but it also underwent significant growth over the subsequent 20-year period. Numerous articles in the Journal trace and analyse aspects of this evolution. Contributions in the Journal also cover most of the AU human rights treaties and soft law standards. A number of issues contain a ‘special focus’ section dealing with a thematic issue of particular relevance or concern, such as the focus on the Protocol to the African Charter on the Rights of Women (2006 no 1); ‘30 years of the African Charter’ (2011 no 2); and ‘sexual and reproductive rights and the African Women’s Protocol’ (2014 no 2). The scope of the Journal extends beyond the supranational dimension of human rights. Over the years many contributions explored aspects of the domestic human rights situation in countries such as the Democratic Republic of the Congo, Eswatini, Ethiopia, Lesotho, Malawi, Mauritius, Nigeria, South Africa, Tanzania, Uganda and Zimbabwe. From time to time the specific focus sections also veered towards domestic human rights protection. See for instance the focus on 20 years of the South African Constitution (2014 no 2); on ‘adolescent sexual and reproductive rights in the African region’ (2017 no 2); on ‘the rule of law in sub-Saharan Africa’ (2018 no 1); and on ‘dignity taking and dignity restorations’ (2018 no 2).