Members of Parliament and senior government officials from Nauru are this week participating in a seminar on human rights, good governance and sustainable development.
The event is organised by the Pacific Community (SPC) through its Regional Rights Resource Team (RRRT) in conjunction with the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP), with support from the European Union and the Australian Government.
In his opening remarks, the Deputy Speaker of Parliament, the Hon Asterio Appi, said the issues of the sustainable development goals (SDGs) and human rights are topical and assume high significance for Nauru and its future.
“I am more than happy that SPC and UNDP have come out with this important initiative of briefing and engaging members of parliament on these issues. I am hopeful that the outcomes of this seminar will bear fruit and will enable MPs to discharge their parliamentary duties in a meaningful way as far as these issues are concerned,” Deputy Speaker Appi said.
The human rights sessions facilitated by SPC are discussing human rights in Nauru, including the State’s obligations and key challenges; the linkages between social and economic development and human rights; Nauru’s Family Protection and Domestic Violence Bill the journey so far; and the national human rights institutions in Nauru.
At the end of the seminar, MPs will deliberate on the roles and responsibilities of MPs to promote, protect, respect and fulfil human rights.
“Parliament is the highest decision and law making institution in Nauru and it is important that we help sensitise elected MPs to their role as guardians of human rights for the citizens of Nauru,” SPC’s Acting RRRT Director, Nicol Cave, said.
One outcome of the seminar will be a paper for the Nauru Cabinet with a set of recommendations to advance human rights for all in Nauru.
At a regional consultation in 2015, MP’s from 11 Pacific nations formally recognised the vital role of Parliament and parliamentarians to respect, fulfil, protect and promote the inherent rights of all people in the Pacific, and called upon SPC, through RRRT, to roll out national MPs consultations to progress human rights, good governance and development.
To date, the MPs consultations have been held in Fiji, Marshall Islands, Kiribati and Tuvalu.
RRRT will offer ongoing support to Nauru to meet the commitments the Government of Nauru has made through its ratification of key international human rights treaties, including the Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination Against Women (CEDAW), the Convention on the Rights of the Child (CRC), and Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities (CRPD).
Human Rights Day is observed by the international community every year on 10 December.
Onorina Saukelo, RRRT Communications Assistant, [email protected] or +679 330 5582