Legislatures are central to modern democratic politics, holding governments to account, and scrutinising legislation in order to generate more effective public policy. Yet during moments of crisis, legislatures are often bypassed as presidents and prime ministers prioritise a rapid response. The concern that legislatures will be marginalised, with greater power concentrated in the hands of […]
WFD congratulates Georgian Parliaments Human Rights Committee
Westminster Foundation for Democracy (WFD) welcomes the adoption of rules of procedure by the Georgian Parliament’s Human Rights Committee (HRC) after MPs passed recommendations without amendment.
Mrs Eka Beselia, Chair of the HRC, received praise from George Kunnath, WFD’s Regional Director for Europe, following the passage of the relevant legislation earlier in June.
The changes mean the Parliament of Georgia will in future conduct hearings on a range of issues covering:
- recommendations produced by the UN human rights committee relating to Georgia;
- judgements made by the European Court of Human Rights; and
- recommendations provided as part of the UN’s Universal Periodic Review process.
“This is a major step which strengthens the Parliament of Georgia’s ability to scrutinise the Government’s implementation of its Human Rights Action Plan,” George Kunnath said.
WFD, in partnership with the University of Oxford, has developed an assessment tool for human rights committees to improve their effectiveness and help them comply with international standards and best practice.
Its outcomes in Macedonia, Serbia, Tunisia, Uganda and Ukraine, as well as Georgia, were summed up in a paper presented in the UK Parliament on 6 July.
Mrs Beselia, who spoke at the launch event, told the Westminster audience that the “institutional absence” of the scrutiny of human rights had been replaced by her committee’s work being viewed “as a normal and ordinary process”.
The successful reforms follow six months of engagement between MPs on the Committee with civil society organisations in Georgia.
Westminster Foundation for Democracy is launching a research paper on the role that parliaments have played so far during the COVID-19 crisis as part of our ongoing partnership with the University of Birmingham. The pandemic generated challenges for all democratic institutions, and legislatures were no exceptions, having to consider how to adapt to debate, pass […]
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