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Human rights commissioner accepts he can’t run again

Jul 12. 2017
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By The Nation

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The chairman of the National Human Rights Commission (NHRC), What Tingsmith, said he accepted that he and other NHRC commissioners would be unable to re-contest their positions if they were dismissed from office.

Regardless, What said he would not run for the position again.

What, a former judge, said on Wednesday that the current NHRC could not come back after a reset. This was because, under the new Constitution, the commission was recognised as an independent organisation whose commissioners could only serve on such a body once in a lifetime.

The new organic bill governing the NHRC stipulates that the current commissioners should leave office after the law comes into effect.

However, some legislators have argued that the commissioners could run again for their positions because the agency is not an independent organisation according to the charter of 2007 that gave birth to the agency.

What insisted that the 2007 charter stipulated that NHRC members could only serve once.

“The fact about the NHRC members not being able to run again is stated in the charter. It is not feasible to write in the organic law that we can,” What said.

The NHRC chairman said that any news to the contrary was merely a different interpretation of the law, perhaps designed to play down strong opposition to the resetting.

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