The Inquirer is a leading independent daily newspaper published in Liberia, based in Monrovia. It is privately owned with a "good reputation".

Liberia Hosts 1st Nat’l Confab On Development Rights

It seems as if the national conference being held in Liberia on development rights for the first time will get multinationals and international corporations’ attentions as almost all of the actors do acknowledge that development rights are human rights but whether the duty bearers will add political will is another step to climb if the matter must be taken serious.
The Legal Advisor in the office of the Vice President, Paul Harry, who proxy for Madam Jewel Howard Taylor said the government must make sure that the natural resources of the nation benefit the people.
He made the comments when he formally declared a two-day National Conference on Right to Development opened yesterday in Monrovia.
“The right to development is an inalienable human right by virtue of which every human person and all peoples are entitled to participate in, contribute to, and enjoy economic, social, cultural and political development, in which all human rights and fundamental freedoms can be fully realized,” the Vice President proxy noted.
Earlier, the United Nations Higher Commission on Human Rights’ Representative in Liberia, Uchenna Emelonye said the conference which is designed to put forward developmental agenda was unprecedented being the first of its kind not only in West Africa in general but Liberia in particular.
Emelonye said United Nations mandate is to promote human rights therefore development rights cannot be exempted thereby calling for participation, contribution and enjoyment of the benefits of one country’s natural resources.
The Chairperson of the Independent National Commission on Human Rights (INCHR), Dempster Brown said the right to development is the right of every human beings.
He believes the right to carry out development must touch everybody mostly those in rural communities who are custodians of their country’s natural resources.
“National budget must be human rights friendly. If not, the budget will not be fulfilled because to carry out development, locals must not be forgotten. The people must be the beneficiaries because they are the police of the resources,” Brown noted.
Brown advanced further that the INCHR came into being to speak for people rights including development rights therefore the national budget must be at their center.
Also, speakers from the international community like the Chinese, European Union, United Kingdom, Cuba, Nigeria, Ghana and others comments were tailored in the same fashioned.
They said it is citizens’ entitlement to participate in, contribute to and enjoy economic, social, cultural and political developments if all their human rights and fundamental freedoms are to be fully realized.
The workshop was organized by the United Nations Human Rights Office of the High Commissioner, the Liberian and Chinese Governments (the Independent National Commission on High Rights).
The conference which ends today has brought together local administrators like Fiscal and Development Superintendents from the 15 counties, rights groups, the media and policy-makers.
Participants were drilled through various topics including introduction to the declaration on the right to development and its general principles; United Nations mechanisms on the right to development and the rights to development (the Chinese perspective)
Others topics are sustainable development goals and rights to development; Chinese belt and road initiative; role of the right to development, international cooperation and solidarity in implementing a new vision for governance and partnership to support human rights for all.
While the history of the right to development including with reference to the Rio and Vienna Declarations and programme of action, declaration on the rights of indigenous peoples, declaration on the rights of peasants; Covid-19 and building forward better together are being discussed as well as the role and relevance of the rights to development in response, recovery, prevention and preparedness well as Africa, Liberia and the right to development including historical roots of the RTD, ACHPR, African Commission and court and case law upholding the RTD strengthening engagement of Liberia and the continent with an important role for civil society.

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