The Committee Against Torture (CAT) is composed of 10 independent experts who are elected for a term of four years. It monitors the implementation of the provisions of the Convention against Torture and Other Cruel, Inhuman or Degrading Treatment or Punishment (CAT).
Members serve in their personal capacity and may be re-elected if nominated. The Committee Against Torture normally convenes twice year for sessions of three weeks' duration, normally in May and November in Geneva.
The Convention was adopted and opened for signature, ratification and accession by General Assembly resolution 39/46 of 10 December 1984. It entered into force on 26 June 1987, in accordance with Article 27, paragraph 1.
As of February 2012, the following African States have ratified the Convention:
Algeria, Benin, Botswana, Burkina Faso, Burundi, Cameroon, Cape Verde, Central African Republic, Chad, The Congo, The Democratic Republic Congo, Côte d'Ivoire, Djibouti, Equatorial Guinea, Egypt, Ethiopia, Guinea, Gabon, Ghana, Kenya, Lesotho, Liberia, Libyan Arab Jamahiriya, Madagascar, Malawi, Mali, Mauritania, Mauritius, Morocco, Mozambique, Namibia, The Niger, Nigeria, Swaziland, Senegal, Seychelles, Sierra Leone, Somalia, South Africa, Tunisia, Togo, Uganda, Zambia
The Optional Protocol allows in-country inspections of places of detention which are undertaken in collaboration with national institutions. It was adopted on 18 December 2002 at the fifty-seventh session of the UN General Assembly and entered into force on 22 June 2006, in accordance with Article 28, paragraph 1.
As of February 2012, the following African States have ratified the Optional Protocol: