Round table in Eswatini after follow-up evaluation by the Human Rights Committee
Published on 17 Aug 2021, 05:08 PM
Eswatini was reviewed by the Human Rights Committee for the first time in 2017
On 20 May 2021, the Centre organized a round table together with the Commission on Human Rights and Public Administration/Integrity (CHRPA). The meeting was organised to pursue the constructive engagement initiated in the context of the review of the First periodic report of Eswatini under the ICCPR during the 120th session of the Human Rights Committee in June 2017 in Geneva.
Eswatini ratified the ICCPR in 2004 and, and its implementation of the Covenant was reviewed by the Human Rights Committee for the first time in 2017. Three recommendations were selected for the follow-up procedure, and their implementation was evaluated by the Committee in October 2020. All recommendations received either a B or a C grade, which have the following meaning:
- B: Reply/action partially satisfactory: The State party has taken steps towards the implementation of the recommendation, but additional information or action remains necessary.
- C: Reply/action not satisfactory: A response has been received, but action taken or information provided by the State party is not relevant or does not implement the recommendation.
Read the full follow-up report here.
To prepare the round table, the Centre organized an informal meeting for civil society organizations that aimed to give the necessary background information for the upcoming meeting. That included information about the follow-up procedure of the Human Rights Committee, the grading, and preparations of the statements that would be shared during the round table.
The aim of the round table was to continue the dialogue with all relevant stakeholders regarding the implementation of Committee’s Concluding Observations, with particular focus on the recommendations selected for the follow-up procedure of the Committee. In addition, Eswatini’s next cycle is about to start, with the Committee adopting its LOIPR in the coming sessions.
The meeting was co-hosted by the CHRPA, whose Executive Secretary, Linda Nxumalo, moderated the discussions. The meeting started with opening remarks from Sabelo Masuku, Commissioner at the CHRPA, and continued with background information given by the Centre. Hon. Pholile Shakantu, Minister of Justice and Constitutional Affairs shared her perspective on the recommendations, including some of the progress that was made and some of the challenges that remain. Vasilka Sancin, Vice-Chair of the Human Rights Committee, explained how the recommendations were chosen, and how the Committee evaluates a State’s response. Several civil society representatives, including from FSEJ, Rock of Hope, SWAGGA and Council of Churches, shared their point of view, in particular relating to the three issues that were put forward. The round table ended with an open discussion, in which the NMRF and other participants took the floor. You can find the agenda here.