June 22, 2015 By Ibrahim Tarawallie
Stakeholders last Friday, 19 June validated the cycle two Universal Periodic Review (UPR) report on the state of human rights in Sierra Leone at the Bank Complex, Kingtom in Freetown.
The report of the UPR will be submitted to the United Nations Human Rights Council.
As part of the processes that led to the preparation of the draft UPR report, the Human Rights Commission of Sierra Leone in May held regional workshops in Bo and in Magburaka for participants from the south-east and Western Area and Northern Region, respectively.
A key requirement of the reporting mechanism is that the Human Rights Commission of Sierra Leone should provide technical support to government ahead of the submission, and conduct strategic engagement meetings to ensure the full participation of major stakeholders.
Speaking during the validation meeting, chairperson of the commission, Brima A. Sheriff, noted that the validation encompassed the views of participants in various consultations across the country and that their thoughts have been collated and imputed into the draft report.
The UPR was established by the United Nations General Assembly Resolution 60/25 on 15 March, 2006 and established the United Nations Human Rights Council, which replaced the Commission on Human Rights.
Sierra Leone underwent its first successfully review in May 2011 during the 11th Session of the Human Rights Council and is due for a second cycle review in January 2016.
During the country’s first review, which was led by Attorney-General and Minister of Justice, Franklyn Obai Kargbo, out of 129 recommendations made by the review committee, the government acknowledged that 57 of them had already been implemented.