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800 N. Harvey Oklahoma City, OK 73102 405.208.5271
The African Regional Intellectual Property Organization (ARIPO) (thereafter referred to as “the Organization’), is an intergovernmental Organization, which was established in Lusaka, Zambia, in 1976 by an Agreement concluded under the auspices of the United National Economic Commission for Africa (ECA) and the World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO). The Organization was created, inter alia, to promote the development of Intellectual Property laws appropriate to the needs of its members, establish common services and training schemes, assist its members in the acquisition and development of technology and the evolving of common views on Intellectual Property matters.
This is the link to OAPI, an organization of former Civil Law Countries that are trying to protect their IP rights.
The African Model
African nations have implemented their intellectual property protections through existing intellectual property treaties and organizations such as WIPO, WTO, TRIPPS, and GATT. Africa too has experienced the process of colonization, and as such, has also attempted to decolonize. The long road to protection is a reflection of this colonial past and the many countries treaties are broken up into Anglophone and Francophone groups. This past has meant that much of Africa’s recent history, intellectual property rights did not extend to “folklore” or “traditional knowledge,” as copyright, trademarks, and patents used by the common law or civil law systems did not acknowledge group ownership of such rights.
 Adebambo Adewopo, The Global Intellectual Property System and Sub-Saharan Africa: A Prognostic Reflection, 33 U. Tol. L. Rev. 749 (2002).
Indigenous Knowledge System and Intellectual Property Rights in the Twenty-First Century by
Publication Date: 2005-12-01
"This volume discusses a number of issues on the contested nature of intellectual property rights (IPR) and Indigenous Knowledge Systems (IKS) in the context of Southern Africa. The issues addressed include the protection of folklore, IKS in a digital era, the valuation and safeguard of heritage sites, the need for appropriate IKS legislation, community based control of natural resources and the role played by traditional music in the maintenance of community. It is this extensive exploration of IKS from the vantage points of communication and culture, and explored in terms of policy, cultural survival, international as well as intra-national politics, economics, philosophy and ethics that makes this empirical grounded collection of papers unique, a distinctive contribution to the literature and 'cause' of IKS. The specific IKS-related issues raised and dealt with in this volume are generic in the sense that the very same issues are being contested in different parts of the world. In this respect, this book highlights the particular as a means of comprehending the universal." Publisher Description
This blog keeps up to date information on the status of IP law in Africa.
Excellent Forum forum on the challenges facing the protection of IP rights of the African people.