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NHRCK Chairperson elected as the new Chairperson of
the Asia Pacific Forum of National Human Rights Institutions(APF)
- NHRCK hopes to play a leading role in promoting and protecting human rights in the Aisa Pacific region -
Chairperson Doohwan Song of the National Human Rights Commission of Korea was elected as the new Chairperson of the Asia Pacific Forum of National Human Rights Institutions(hereinafter the ‘APF’) at the APF 27th Annual General Meeting on 15 September. The Chairperson of the APF is elected for 2 years and also takes the role of the the APF Governance Committee Chairperson. The Chairperson advises on the APF Strategic Plans at the APF General Assembly, adopts the Operational Plan, supervises the key activities of the APF, including the implementation of the APF Strategic Plan, and represents the APF in such international settings as the UN Human Rights Council.
The APF Annual General Meeting is the largest international human rights meeting in the Asia Pacific region and the participants of the meeting are 25 member National Human Rights Institutions(NHRIs), officials from the UN bodies and the Global Alliance of National Human Rights Institutions(GANHRI). With its Secretariat Office located in Australia, the APF has been holding the Annual General Meeting in different cities in the Asia Pacific region every year since its establishment in 1996. The Annual General Meeting this year was held via online platform due to the ongoing COVID19 pandemic.
Only the NHRIs accredited with ‘A’ status can run for the APF Chairperson position and the Chairperson is elected through direct and secret voting by other ‘A’ status NHRIs. At the 27th Annual General Meeting, Chairperson Doohwan Song of the National Human Rights Commission of Korea was elected as the APF Chairperson, Chairperson Khunan Jargalsaikhan of the Mongolian Human Rights Commission as the Deputy Chair and Chairperson Justice Arun Kuma Mishra of the Indian Human Rights Commission as one of the member of the APF Governance Committee.
With Chairperson Song elected as the Chairperson of the APF, the NHRCK is expected to play bigger role in the APF’s decision making process and discussions on pending human rights issues and the regional standing of the Commission within the Asia Pacific region will grow further.
“I hope to further enhance the role of the APF as a regional NHRI network and strengthen the cooperation system among the member NHRIs during my tenure as the APF Chair,” said Chairperson Song, shortly after being elected as the new Chairperson of the APF. Chairperson Song also represents the APF on GANHRI Bureau, starting from 2023.
Apart from the elections, the agenda discussed at the 27th Annual General Meeting include the progress and the way forward in mainstreaming gender equality within each NHRIs and among the APF members, changing the status for some member NHRIs, presentation of the APF Annual Performance Report(from July 2021 to June 2022) and the adoption of the Audited Accounts.