The Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights was established in April 2018
following the signing of a six-year host country agreement with the Government of Liberia. The
agreement allows the office to exercise a full human rights promotion and protection mandate.
The OHCHR’s functions are defined by the agreement with the Government of Liberia to: exercise
the mandate of the High Commissioner to protect and promote human rights; contribute to national
efforts in promoting respect for, and observance of human rights; observe the human rights situation
and inform authorities; provide capacity building to national institutions, civil society organisations
(CSOs), and individuals regarding promotion and protection of human rights; and prepare reports
and statements as and when determined by the High Commissioner. In line with OHCHR Liberia’s
human rights protection and promotion mandate, the Office strengthened capacities of
government, CSOs, private sector and academia through technical assistance, capacity building
and trainings on thematic human rights issues and has conducted trial monitoring to detect and
prevent any due process violations.
Type of engagement
2018 (but formerly present in Liberia since 2003 as part of UNSMIL)
Annual budget needs
- OHCHR Liberia has strengthened the capacities of Ministries, Agencies, and Commissions, Civil Society Organisation (CSOs) and the Independent National Commission for Human Rights (INCHR) on UN Guiding Principles on Business and Human Rights and generated consensus on the need to develop a road map to inform the drafting of a Nation Action Plan on Business and Human Rights.
- Following Liberia’s review under the first Universal Periodic Review (UPR) in 2010; the Government of Liberia developed its first five-year National Human Rights Action Plan-NHRAP to provide an overarching framework to guide relevant stakeholders in implementing the commitments elaborated in the plan. OHCHR has continued to strengthen capacities of the NHRAP Steering Committee, which is co-chaired by the Ministry of Justice and Ministry of Foreign Affairs, to take stock of milestones made and lessons learnt to inform the drafting of the Second NHRAP. In order to operationalise its coordination role, the NHRAP Steering Committee agreed that the Ministry of Justice Human Rights Protection Division-HRPD should serve as a secretariat to coordinate all human rights events and activities including the development of the Second NHRAP which was completed in December 2019. OHCHR Liberia provided support to the Ministry of Justice to strengthen the National Mechanism for Reporting and Follow-up (NMRF) to assist Liberia in meeting its international human rights reporting obligations. It also provided support to the Government for subsequent UPR reviews, including Liberia’s third cycle review in November 2020.
- OHCHR Liberia has strengthened capacities of human rights NGOs to engage with international human rights mechanisms. In July 2018, OHCHR supported a live streaming of Liberia’s review by the Human Rights Committee. This OHCHR office has facilitated the creation of a platform for CSOs engagement with government in the elaboration of a road map for drafting the Second National Action Plan which will incorporate recommendations from regional and international mechanisms.
- The Office has strengthened capacities of relevant stakeholders, traditional leaders, CSOs and the Independent National Commission for Human Rights and government actors at county level to strengthen access to justice for SGBV survivors. A referral pathway to address due process violations arising from criminal justice proceedings was established to strengthen legal /justice response.
Partners and Donors
Partners: Government of Liberia, Legislature, Supreme Court of Justice, Law Reform Commission, Independent Nation Commission for Human Rights, civil society, UN agencies, European Union.
Donors: Peacebuilding Fund, Sweden, MPTF.
UN Human Rights Focus Areas
Mechanisms: Increasing implementation of the international human rights mechanisms outcomes
Development: Integrating human rights in sustainable development
Accountability: Strengthening rule of law and accountability for human rights violations
Non-discrimination: Enhancing equality and countering discrimination
Participation: Enhancing & protecting civic space and people's participation
Peace and Security: Early warning, prevention & protection of human rights in situations of conflict & insecurity
Last reviewed: November 2020