“The DPB informed the SCA that the DPB has tabled before Parliament, on 15 April 2024, a Bill to amend its enabling Law to explicitly allow civil society organizations to propose candidates for the position of the Defensor. The SCA is of the view that it is important to ensure the formalization of a participatory selection and appointment process of the leadership of an NHRI in relevant legislation, regulations or binding administrative guidelines. A process that ensures pluralism is necessary to ensure the independence of, and public confidence in, the senior leadership of an NHRI. Such a process should involve open and fair consultation with NGOs and civil society. The current Defensor took office in September 2022 and sent to the Senate the three names of his Deputies to be ratified; however, this ratification was approved only in July 2023. The mentioned Bill also advocates for the removal of the requirement for the Senate to ratify the appointment of the deputies.

The SCA encourages the DPB to continue to advocate for the passage of the proposed Bill which would lead to a timely selection and appointment of Deputies, and to ensure pluralism in the composition of its leadership.

The SCA refers to Paris Principle B.1 and to its General Observations 1.7 on ‘Ensuring pluralism of the NHRI’ and 1.8 on ‘Selection and appointment of the decision-making body of a NHRI’.”