The Disability Rights Unit of the Centre for Human Rights (the Centre) on 21 September 2017 had a privilege of hosting a delegation of senior government officials from the Kingdom of Lesotho (Lesotho).
The delegation comprised of Ms Nthabiseng Sekokotoana (Senior Assistant Parliamentary Counsel), Ms Linkeng Khubetsoana (Chief Legal Officer – Ministry of Social Development) and Ms Mahlapane Makakole – Bodiba (Director Disability Services – Ministry of Social Development) and from South Africa Mr Benny Palime (Director of Policy Legislation for Disability – Department of Social Development).
The delegation visited South Africa to learn and engage the South African government on the different aspects of disability rights policy and legislation with respect to the social inclusion, non-discrimination, equality of opportunity and monitoring of the rights of persons with disabilities.
As a way of supplementing the delegation’s learning experience in South Africa, the delegation visited the Centre to learn on how the Centre has been able to contribute to the disability rights discourse in Africa and how this contribution (through research and training) can support the Lesotho government as it works towards domesticating the Convention of the Rights of Persons with Disabilities (CRPD).
To ensure the success of the domestication process, the Centre reiterated the significance of a meaningful and effective consultation process and involvement of persons with disabilities throughout the development of the legislation that will safeguard the rights of persons with disabilities. The Centre reminded the delegation of the provisions of the CRPD and more specifically one that requires the CRPD member’s states to establish a monitoring body responsible for monitoring the implementation of the CRPD.
The unit congratulates the government of Lesotho for taking this important and significant step and for joining a growing movement of other African Union member states domesticating the CRPD.