Peace Agreements

Namibian Independence

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Parties: Namibia; South Africa; Angola

Type: Intra-state

Principles concerning the Constituent Assembly and the Constitution for an Independent Namibia

12 July 1982

Principles for a Peaceful Settlement in South-Western Africa (New York Principles)

20 July 1988

The Parties in the Principles for an Independent Namibia agreed that elections would be held to select a Constituent Assembly, which would adopt a Constitution for an independent Namibia. In this regard, all adult Namibians would have voting rights and the right to stand and campaign for election. Voting would be by secret ballot, the timelines and electoral procedures would be decided promptly, and the electoral system would seek to ensure fair representation. Freedom of speech, assembly, movement and press would be guaranteed. The Constitution would determine the organisation and powers of all levels of government and would be the supreme law of the State. Namibia would be a unitary, sovereign and democratic state. The Constitution would include a declaration of fundamental rights. Criminal offences would not be established with retroactive effect.

In the Principles for a Peaceful Settlement the Parties accepted the responsibility of States not to allow their territory to be used for acts of war, aggression or violence against other States. The Parties affirmed the right of the peoples of the southwestern region of Africa to self-determination, independence and equality of rights, as well as the right of States to peace, development and social progress. The Parties agreed to African and international co-operation for the settlement of the problems of the development of the southwestern region of Africa.