“In accordance with Article 10 of the Law, members of the CNDH are selected by their respective organisations. 

Article 11 of the Law provides for the establishment of a selection committee comprised of the First President of the Supreme Court, the President of the Council of State, the President of the Court of Auditors, and the President of the National Economic and Social Council. Article 9 requires that the selection committee is to ensure that the composition of the CNDH is based on criteria of competency, probity, societal and institutional pluralism, as well as representation of women. In accordance with Article 12, members are appointed by presidential decree. 

The SCA is of the view that the process currently enshrined in the Law is not sufficiently broad and transparent. In particular, it does not: 

– require the advertisement of vacancies; 

– establish clear and uniform criteria upon which all parties assess the merit of eligible applicants; and 

– promote broad consultation and/or participation in the application, screening, selection and appointment process. 

The SCA is also of the view that providing for different stakeholders to select members according to their rules of operation may result in different entities using different processes for selection, and that a consistent, transparent, merit-based and broadly consultative selection process should be used across all appointing entities. 

It is critically important to ensure the formalization of a clear, transparent and participatory selection and appointment process for an NHRI’s decision-making body in relevant legislation, regulations or binding administrative guidelines, as appropriate. A process that promotes merit-based selection and ensures pluralism is necessary to ensure the independence of, and public confidence in, the senior leadership of an NHRI. 

The SCA encourages the CNDH to continue to advocate for the formalization and application of a uniform process that includes requirements to: 

a) Publicize vacancies broadly; 

b) Maximize the number of potential candidates from a wide range of societal groups and educational qualifications; 

c) Promote broad consultation and / or participation in the application, screening, selection and appointment process; 

d) Assess applicants on the basis of pre-determined, objective and publicly-available criteria; and 

e) Select members to serve in their individual capacity rather than on behalf of the organization they represent.”