“Section 193 (4) of the Constitution provides that SAHRC members are appointed by the President on the recommendations of the National Assembly. Section 193(5) specifies that the National Assembly must recommend individuals nominated by a Committee of the Assembly, which includes members from political parties.

The SCA notes that the law is silent on the requirement to publicize vacancies broadly and on the process used by the Committee of the National Assembly in shortlisting the candidates whose names are submitted for consideration by the National Assembly.

The SCA notes that while Section 193 (6) of the Constitution allows for civil society participation, the law is not explicit on the modality of such participation in the application, screening, selection, and appointment process. It is critically important to ensure the formalization of a clear, transparent, and participatory selection and appointment process for an NHRI decision-making body in relevant legislation, regulations, or binding administrative guidelines, as appropriate. The SAHRC informs that the proposed amendment to the Law on the selection and appointment process is awaiting presentation to Parliament by the Department of Justice and Constitutional Affairs.

The SCA, reiterates its previous recommendations of 2017 and recommends the SAHRC to continue advocate for the formalization of a selection and appointment process in relevant legislation, regulations or binding administrative guidelines and application of a process that includes the requirement to:

a) Publicize vacancies broadly; and

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

The SCA refers to Paris Principle B.1 and to its General Observation 1.8 on ‘Selection and appointment of the decision-making body of NHRIs’.”