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Publishing Ethics Statement - African Journal of Religion, Philosophy and Culture

Ethics Policy 
The publication of an article in the African Journal of Religion, Philosophy and Culture (AJRPC) is a direct reflection of the quality of the work of the authors and their respective institutional affiliations. Peer-reviewed articles need to meet minimum standards of expected ethical behaviour for all parties involved in the act of publishing: notably the author(s), journal editor, peer reviewer(s), publisher and the wider society amongst other stakeholders. Manuscripts in breach of these thresholds would be subject to retraction even after publication. AJRPC’s ethical policy follows the guidelines of COPE (Committee on Publication Ethics). We are particular about unethical submission practices on the part of authors (see section 1.1); breach of publishing agreement (section 1.2); and any conflict of interest on the part of both authors and reviewers (section 1.3).
Submission Policy

a. Submission of an article implies that it has not been previously published (except in the form of an abstract or as part of a lecture or academic thesis); is not under consideration for publication elsewhere (i.e. multiple submissions); its publication is approved by all authors and tacitly or explicitly by the responsible authorities where the work was carried out; and, if accepted, will not be published elsewhere in the same form, without the written consent of the copyright-holder. Articles accepted for publication by the journal will be checked for originality using the anti-plagiarism software, iThenticate.  The journal’s threshold is 20 per cent.
b. Corresponding authors requesting to add another author after review and acceptance of the paper for publication must clarify reasons for the addition and obtain a written consent from both the author to be added and all the co-author(s) of the article.  Without the written consent of all concerned, the request for addition of an author cannot be considered.
c. If the corresponding author requests for the removal of any author before publication, he/she must clarify the reasons for the removal and obtain the written consent of all concerned, including the author whose name is to be removed. Without such written consent, the request cannot be considered.
d. For co-authored articles, authors wishing to change the order in which author names appear in an article must jointly request for the change in writing signed by all the authors in the affected article.  
e. Where authors have dispute over an article after it has been reviewed and accepted for publication, and appear unable to resolve their differences amicably, the journal reserves the right to decline the publication of the paper and refund any publication fee paid (less 30% administrative fee).

Authors’ warrant

Following the above, authors submitting a paper for evaluation and publication warrant the following:
I. That the article is not being considered for publication elsewhere.
II. That the article so submitted is an original work.
III. That there is no conflict of interests or any plagiarism issues (including ‘text recycling’ or ‘self-plagiarism’), and that the publishers  are authorized to run the paper through  anti-plagiarism software to establish this.
IV. That the work does not include libellous, defamatory or unlawful statements.
V. That permission has been cleared for any third party material included.
VI. That authorship has been agreed prior to submission and that no one has been ‘gifted’ authorship or denied credit as an author.
VII. That the Authors have followed appropriate international and national procedures with respect to data protection and rights to privacy. 
1.2 Copyright Transfer Form

a. Upon acceptance of a manuscript, authors will be asked to complete and sign a Copyright Transfer Form. 
b. Without the author returning the signed copyright transfer form, the paper cannot be considered for publication. 
c. If excerpts from other copyrighted works are included in the article, the author(s) must obtain written permission from the copyright owners and credit the source(s) in the article. 
1.3 Conflict of interest

i) All authors are requested to disclose any actual or potential conflict of interest including any financial, personal or other relationships with other people or organizations that could inappropriately influence, or be perceived to influence, their work. Conflicts of interest include:
   • A personal interest in the outcomes of the review process.
   • A personal interest in the suppression of the outcome of the review process.  
ii) An Editor or Guest editor who wishes to publish in a journal that he/she edits (or guest edits) must ensure that evaluation of his/her paper adheres strictly to the journal’s review process.  Editors and Editorial Board members must not  partake in any decisions regarding any papers they have written themselves or were written by people knowingly related to them – either by blood or professionally.  Furthermore, the review of articles by Editors, Guest Editors and Editorial Board Members must strictly follow the journal’s procedures and review processes. 
iii) If a conflict of interest is suspected, this should be reported to the editor or the publisher. Any concerns regarding an editor should be raised with the journal publisher. Adonis & Abbey Publishers will follow the flowcharts recommended by COPE in cases of a suspected conflict of interest.

Grievance procedure 

The following complaints procedure outlines the process for addressing grievances by authors whose articles are rejected for publication, or who have concerns about the way their inquiry was handled or the way their paper was reviewed:
1. The grievance must be submitted in writing to the editor or publishers of the journal (or both depending on the nature of the complaint).
2. The grievance will be considered by the journal editorial team (or the publishers).
3. The grievance will be acknowledged within 5 working days of receipt, investigated and aimed to be resolved within 30 days.
4. The decision will be in writing and will be final.



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