“The Law is silent on the grounds and process for dismissal.

The SCA notes that article 4 of the draft law provides that membership in the NCHR is terminated in the case of resignation, death, or the issuance of a final tribunal verdict against a member for a dishonorable office or one of the crimes that constitutes a violation of human rights. Also in accordance with article 4, termination of membership is effected by a two-thirds (2/3) majority vote of the NCHR. It appears that these amendments would address the above-noted concern.

The SCA is of the view that, in order to address the Paris Principles requirement for a stable mandate, which is important in reinforcing independence, the enabling legislation of an NHRI must contain an independent and objective dismissal process. The dismissal must be made in strict conformity with all the substantive and procedural requirements prescribed by law.

The grounds for dismissal must be clearly defined and appropriately confined to only those actions which impact adversely on the capacity of the members to fulfill their mandate. Where appropriate, the legislation should specify that the application of a particular ground must be supported by a decision of an independent body with appropriate jurisdiction. Dismissal should not be allowed solely on the discretion of appointing authorities.

Such requirements ensure the security of tenure of the members of the governing body and are essential to ensure the independence of, and public confidence in, the senior leadership of an NHRI.”