The Human Rights Commission of Sierra Leone (HRCSL) received a delegation from the Parliamentary Caucus on Freedom of Religion and Believe (FORB) in The Gambia on Thursday 2nd March, 2023
Purpose of the visit was to understudy from the Commission certain human rights issues in the country and more especially the successes and challenges in the implementation of the HRCSL’s Act of 2004.
Chairman of the Caucus, Hon. Amadu Camara, expressed delight for visiting the Commission to know more about their work.
“Human rights issues are very central to Parliament and parliamentary work and we do almost everything together. We are delighted to be here,” he said and disclosed that the caucus was established in 2019, but was officially launched in December 2022.
He said they are interested in minor issues around violations of rights, and religious and ethnic tolerance in Sierra Leone.
On behalf of the HRCSL, Commissioner, Hassan Samba Yarjah, welcomed the delegation and informed them that the Commission was established by an Act of Parliament in 2004 to protect and promote the human rights of all in Sierra Leone.
He said the HRCSL is an independent national human rights institution and that over the years it has been enjoining independence as there has never been a situation where the Commission has been subjected to any interference in its work.
He spoke about the Commission’s complaints handling mechanisms, publication of the annual State of Human Rights Reports and the accreditation of HRCSL as a Grade ‘A’ national human rights institution in 2011 and subsequent reaccreditations in 2016 and 2022.
He added that Sierra Leone enjoys religious tolerance as Muslims and Christians cohabit, compared to other countries in Africa, where there has been religious intolerance.