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Advisory Council seeks new members
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SEEKING ADVISORY COUNCIL MEMBERS FOR THE NATIONAL HUMAN RIGHTS INSTITUTION, SAMOA

Pursuant to s 39 of the Ombudsman (Komesina o Sulufaiga) Act 2013 and the Paris Principles, which govern the work of National Human Rights Institutions (“NHRI”), the Ombudsman/NHRI (“Omb”) seeks applications or nominations in the pursuit of establishing an Advisory Council for the National Human Rights Institution (“ACNHRI”).

The Advisory Council will have a crucial role in assisting the Ombudsman’s Office to enlarge its awareness and observance of human rights in Samoa. The Advisory Council consists of a body of knowledgeable individuals, which is reflective of diverse constituent groups in Samoan society.

Individuals will be selected on the following criteria:

  • Experience, knowledge and interest in the promotion and protection of human rights.
  • Understanding principles and standards of human rights, international humanitarian law and human rights law.
  • In depth knowledge of the aspirations and needs of different groups in Samoan society.
  • Familiarity or willingness to learn the work of the NHRI, and the work of national human rights institutions in general.
  • Appreciation of Samoan life, culture and tradition.
  • Competence, experience, and commitment to defending human rights and citizens’ rights.

The Terms of Reference of the Advisory Council are the following:

1. The Council will have the following functions:

  1. Assist the Office in enlarging its knowledge and awareness of human rights issues in Samoa;
  2. Assist the office in the promotion of awareness, appreciation and protection of human rights in Samoa;
  3. Advise on matters referred by the Ombudsman;
  4. Raise issues concerning the observance and violations of human rights; and
  5. Reflect and comment on Human Rights Reports prepared by the office.

2. Membership on the Council is not a salaried position, however, sitting allowances will be provided.

3. The Advisory Council is not intended to be a forum for:

  1. Pursuing the agenda of individual organisations; or
  2. Impeding the Office of the Ombudsman in its work.

4. Council members will serve for a 3 year term, and may be re-appointed subject to satisfactory performance.

5. Council members are expected to be people:

  1. Of good character and integrity;
  2. Who have not been convicted of a felony or misdemeanor by a court of competent jurisdiction or by a professional disciplinary board for charges related to fraud or misuse of office/authority;
  3. Who are independent and do not consider the membership in the ACNHRI a representation of any political party or other organisation, and who perform their duties in an objective and professional manner; and
  4. Who act in the best interests of the protection and promotion of human rights.

6. The Advisory Council will meet every quarter, unless otherwise required by the Ombudsman.

7. Council members will forfeit membership if:

  1. They fail to attend 2 consecutive meetings without good reason; or
  2. They do not participate in any of the tasks required of the Council.

8. The meetings of the Advisory Council will be chaired by the Assistant Ombudsman, who will be assisted by one other staff member.

9. Minutes of the Advisory Council will be circulated to all staff and Council members following each meeting.

10. Two weeks before each Advisory Council meeting members must be circulated minutes of the previous meetings, the agenda for the next meeting and any other documents that require their consideration.

11. Council members will observe office policy on discretion and confidentiality with respect to all meetings, and any matters that arise in their role, including media and publicity.

If you have any queries please contact the Office of the Ombudsman on 253-94/233-17 or email on This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it or This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it for further information. To apply or nominate please send a CV and a cover letter outlining suitability for appointment to the Office of the Ombudsman, Level 5, Central Bank Building, or PO Box 3036, Apia, Samoa or by email. Applications must be received by 5p.m Wednesday 21 May 2014.Shortlisted applicants may be contacted for an interview.