By Mr. Frank Njenga and Christine Muriithi
The International Relations class IRL2100 visited the offices of the Kenya National Commission of Human Rights (KNCHR) during a study trip on November 29, 2018 as part of the 70th anniversary of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights celebrations across the globe.
The trip was designed to inform students of their human rights and teach them how to react to reported cases of human rights violations, as well as learn the functions of KNCHR and other national human rights institutions.
The trip also appreciated the work that had been put in place to protect human rights in the country since the establishment of the commission. Kenya has made significant strides in protecting human rights through its constitution and the commission appreciated the gains made so far. It was also noted that the Human Rights Day will be observed on December 10, 2018 across the world which honors the United Nations General Assembly’s adoption and proclamation of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights.
The students were taken through the background of KNCHR, its core mandate and its duties and responsibilities.
The trip also familiarized the students with the National Human Rights Institution (NHRI) which has the responsibility to broadly protect, monitor and promote human rights in a given country. The Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights (OHCHR) engages NHRIs to provide advisory and support to the United Nations treaty bodies whose standards are set out in the Paris Principles. These principles relate to the status and functioning of national institutions for the protection and promotion of human rights. All national human rights institutions are guided by these principles and submit periodic reports to the state and OHCHR.