Prof Sandra Liebenberg, HF Oppenheimer Chair in Human Rights Law and Distinguished Professor at the Faculty of Law, has been nominated by the South African government as the country's candidate to serve on the United Nations' Committee on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights.
The Committee on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights (CESCR) is the UN body of 18 independent experts that monitors implementation of the International Covenant on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights by its member states. Nominations for membership on the Committee may be made by member states to the International Covenant on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights. Members are elected for a term of four years by Member States. Committee Members serve in their personal capacity and may be re-elected if nominated. More details can be found here.
In nominating Prof Liebenberg, the South African Department of International Relations and Cooperation stated that her candidacy is in recognition of her "extensive experience in human rights law, particularly in the area of economic, social and cultural rights".
The election of members will take place in April 2016 in New York.
More about Prof Liebenberg.
Prof Liebenberg is academic director of the Faculty's post-graduate research project on Combating Poverty, Homelessness and Socio-Economic Vulnerability Under the Constitution. She is one of a handful of recipients of the degree of Doctor of Laws from the University of the Witwatersrand conferred on 18 July 2011.
She previously served as a member of the Technical Committee advising the Constitutional Assembly on the Bill of Rights in the 1996 Constitution of South Africa.
In 1997, she founded and directed the Socio-Economic Rights Project based at the Community Law Centre (University of the Western Cape) where she was involved in research, advocacy and supporting litigation in the area of socio-economic rights. In this capacity she was involved in the Centre's amicus curiae interventions in the groundbreaking cases of Government of South Africa v Grootboom and Minister of Health and Others v Treatment Action Campaign and Others.
Since taking up her current position at Stellenbosch University, she has acted as expert advisor and assisted in drafting heads of argument and amicisubmissions for various NGOs involved in a range of significant socio-economic rights cases.
She serves on the editorial board of the South African Journal on Human Rights, the African Human Rights Law Journal, the Human Rights Law Journal and Speculum Juris. She is also Chairperson of the Board of the NGO, SERI (Socio-Economic Rights Institute of South Africa) and a member of the Advisory Board of the Council for the Advancement of the South African Constitution (CASAC).
Professor Liebenberg has published widely in the field of socio-economic rights, and is the author of the recently published book entitled Socio-Economic Rights: Adjudication under a Transformative Constitution (2010, Juta & Co).