Human Rights Officer


This position is located in the United Nations Resident Coordinator Office (RCO) in Lesotho. The incumbent will report to the Senior Human Rights Adviser. The RCO supports the work of the UN Resident Coordinator. The UN Resident Coordinator leads the UN country team in consultations with the Government to define and agree on the UN strategic response to the Government’s development priorities. This response is captured in the United Nations Sustainable Development Framework (UNSDF).

The politicization of the security sector was identified as an impediment to long-term stability and peace in Lesotho. There are initiatives aimed at sustaining the momentum created during the national dialogue phase, which defined specific urgent security sector reforms which, if implemented, will help prevent security related conflicts, reduce gender-based violence linked to the security sector, and improve the human rights situation in the country. The proposed intervention will support the formulation and implementation of policies, the strengthening of institutional mechanisms and the capacities of civil society groups to contribute to the transformation of the security sector to be effective, efficient, and responsive to democratic control and oversight, and to meet the security and justice needs of the Basotho.

A joint project by UNDP,OHCHR in collaboration with UN Women has been developed entitled “Effective Implementation of Lesotho National Security Sector Reforms for Peacebuilding (NSSRP)” and funded through the Peace Building Fund to address the concerns identified in the Lesotho National Dialogue process.

The project seeks to help establish the minimum conditions for a successful Security Sector Reform in Lesotho through the following three Outcomes; first is the development, implementation and effective communication of a national security policy and strategy in line with Lesotho’s international human rights commitments and obligations with the engagement of civil society, sustained commitment of key political and security actors in order to provide a concrete framework to prevent politicization of security institutions; second is strengthened internal and public oversight mechanisms to effectively prevent partisanship within security institutions and enforce the protection of human rights including women’s rights and SGBV; third, enhance citizen participation in implementation of the security sector reforms and related peace-building initiatives.

Duties and Responsibilities
Provide support for implementation of activities towards the security sector reforms for Lesotho.
Support the implementation of the security sector reforms project by ensuring that human rights and gender considerations are included in the reforms
Conduct substantive research and analysis of human rights issues/events and assesses their impact on the human rights situation in Lesotho including best practices in the security sector reform as well as national human rights protection and accountability mechanisms.
Contribute to risk assessment and mitigation measures for any UN support to Lesotho security sector to ensure that the support in line with the UN Human Rights Due Diligence Policy (HRDDP).
Support UN advocacy with relevant authorities, including local government and security sector institutions, on human rights compliance.
Work in close collaboration with staff of relevant committees of National Reforms Authority focusing on human rights-related reforms.
Contribute to the work of consultants hired to support different project outcomes to ensure relevance and sustainability of interventions.

Provide support to the Senior Human Rights Adviser to deliver on the OHCHR Annual Workplan for Lesotho
Support engagement with national partners and counterparts including relevant ministries, departments, security institutions and civil society on human rights issues.
Contribute to processes for the establishment and functioning of the National Human Rights Commission in line with the Paris Principles.
Support consultations for treaty body and Universal Periodic Review reporting as well as the implementation of recommendations from UN human rights mechanisms.
Draft weekly, monthly, quarterly, annual and thematic reports as required
Performs other related duties as required.

Maintain a strategic network for partnerships and collaboration for project implementation, lessons sharing and networking
Collect and analyse human rights data and indicators in Lesotho, including gender-specific data and indicators
Conduct needs assessments and capacity gaps among partners and propose appropriate interventions
Conduct research on laws that are in contradiction with Lesotho’s international human rights commitments and obligations.

Provide project management support to the Senior Human Rights Adviser and ensure effective liaison and coordinated implementation with partners
Develop workplan for area assigned in accordance with established terms of reference
Represent UN human rights programme at working level meetings
Ensure human rights issues, including gender considerations are integrated into political, humanitarian and economic efforts and programmes
Contribute to monitoring, reporting and evaluation of project activities.

Facilitating knowledge creation and management
Identify and synthesize reports on best practices and lessons learned that are directly linked to the project.
Prepare training materials and modules and conducts human rights training and awareness-raising to partners and counterparts in the government as well as the civil society.
Assist in developing materials for human rights workshops, seminars and conferences as well as the selection of implementing partners including service providers.
Translate materials, posters, leaflets, pamphlets and key human rights messages into local language
Conduct capacity-building activities including trainings, workshops, seminars and roundtables.
Contribute to early-warning information through monitoring of the print and electronic media including social-media.
Corporate Competences:
Demonstrates integrity by modelling the UN`s values and ethical standards
Promotes the vision, mission and strategic goals of the United Nations
Displays cultural, gender, religion, race, nationality and age sensitivity and adaptability
Treats all people fairly without favoritism

Functional Competences:
Knowledge of human rights issues and ability to identify related problems in their political, ethnic, racial, gender equality and socio-economic dimensions.
Knowledge of institutional mandates of human rights organizations, prevailing policies and procedures.
Research and analytical skills, including ability to identify and participate in the resolution of human rights issues.
Ability to identify sources for data collection, research and analyze information and draft human rights reports.
Ability to evaluate and integrate information from a variety of sources and assess impact on the human rights situation in the area of assignment.
Is conscientious and efficient in meeting commitments, observing deadlines and achieving results.
Takes responsibility for incorporating gender perspectives and ensuring the equal participation of women and men in all areas of work.

Excellent analytical and writing skills
IT literacy and ability to operate with on-line web-based applications
Knowledge and the ability to apply some data analysis tools and methods

Knowledge Management and Learning
Promotes a knowledge sharing and learning culture
In-depth knowledge of relevant development issues
Ability to provide policy advice

Management and Leadership
Focuses on impact and result for the client and responds positively to feedback
Effective communication skills in various contexts: strategic planning, mentoring, training and making presentations
Builds strong relationships with clients and external actors
Demonstrates openness to change and ability to manage complexities
Required Skills and Experience
Advanced university degree (Master’s degree or equivalent) in law, political science, international relations, social sciences or related field. A first-level university degree in combination with two additional years of qualifying work experience may be accepted in lieu of the advanced university degree.
A minimum five years of progressively responsible experience in human rights, political affairs, international relations, law or related area is required.
A minimum of one year of experience working in field operations of human rights with the United Nations, Government, non-governmental organization or other comparable organization in Lesotho is desirable.
Important applicant information

All posts in the SC categories are subject to local recruitment.

Applicant information about UNDP rosters

Note: UNDP reserves the right to select one or more candidates from this vacancy announcement. We may also retain applications and consider candidates applying to this post for other similar positions with UNDP at the same grade level and with similar job description, experience and educational requirements.

Closing date: 28 May 2021

Apply here!