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Kenya: New national human rights guide launched

By Jeckonia Otieno | October 5th 2016
From left: Secretary, Justice and Constitutional Affairs Maryann Njau-Kimani, Ethics & Anti-Corruption Commission (EACC) CEO Halakhe Waqo (centre) and EACC Deputy CEO Michael Mubea during the EACC Stakeholder's Forum for Validation of the proposed framework for Monitoring Compliance with Chapter Six of the Constitution at the Kenya School of Government, Nairobi. A new blueprint to guide government offices on how and when to protect the rights of Kenyans was launched yesterday. (PHOTO: DAVID NJAAGA/ STANDARD)

A new blueprint to guide government offices on how and when to protect the rights of Kenyans was launched yesterday.

The Attorney General's office released the policy paper to entrench human rights principles in a national policy framework.

Dubbed Sessional Paper No 3 of 2014 on National Policy and Action Plan on Human Rights, the paper seeks to implement Kenya's vision on human rights and set human rights goals and priorities within achievable timeframes.

It also clarifies the responsibilities for the implementation of human rights, as anchored in the Bill of Rights in the Constitution.

The launch sets in motion a five-year plan that elaborates broad human rights principles to guide the government and other actors in carrying out their work without violating the rights of Kenyans.

Some of the key areas that have been identified include civil and political rights, access to justice and the right to political participation.

In a speech read by Secretary, Justice and Constitutional Affairs Mrs Maryann Njau-Kimani, Attorney General Githu Muigai however warned that resource constraints might pose a challenge to the achievement of the policy.

Kenya's Constitution identifies 21 guaranteed rights and freedoms.

George Morara, vice chairman of the Kenya National Commission on Human Rights (KNCHR), said the new policy document sets human rights rules for all government offices.

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