Committee proposes NHRC chairman, members

Staff Correspondent | Published at 12:53am on September 06, 2019

A meeting chaired by the parliament speaker Shirin Sharmin Choudhury on Thursday finalised a list of proposed chairman and members for the upcoming National Human Rights Commission for the next three years.

Emerging out of the meeting, one of the members of the selection committee, Anisul Huq, the law minister, told New Age that they recommended a set of names they considered suitable for the commission and names of persons would be finalised by president Abdul Hamid, who was currently in London.

On August 31, the president jetted off to the United Kingdom to undergo eye treatment and health check-up and would return home on September 8.

Until the president returned, the decision remained pending, said the law minister without disclosing the names the committee recommended. 

Since the beginning of August, the commission has stopped inquiry into rights violations as it did not have any chairman or member.

Commission chairman Kazi Reazul Hoque retired on July 1, on attaining the age of 70 years, the maximum age prescribed in National Human Rights Commission Act 2009.

Permanent member of the commission Nazrul Islam’s tenure expired on August 6 and temporary member Banchhita Chakmas tenure expired on August 8. Tenure of the rest four temporary members of the commission expired on August 2.

The commission secretariat, however, continued clerical jobs, including official correspondences, library management and in-house training, officials said.

According to the Section 7(2) of the National Human Rights Commission Act, the law ministry provides secretarial assistance to a seven-member selection committee headed by the speaker that recommends people for the appointment.

In May, rights activists and foreign diplomats called on the government for an effective civil society engagement in the appointment of chairman and members of the commission.

Foreign diplomats met Shirin Sharmin on May 21 and Anisul Huq on May 19, to discuss the need for a transparent and participatory selection process that might promote the public confidence in the commission.