Speaking at a conference organised, at the beginning of a year-long series of activities to celebrate next year’s 70th Anniversary of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights by the Human Rights Programme, within the University of Malta and the President’s Foundation for the Wellbeing of Society, President of Malta, Marie-Louise Coleiro Preca called for a review on the legislation that regulates the function of Malta’s various national commissioners.
The President said that the national commissioners must be further empowered to be more effective, and to do more, in order to ensure the safeguarding of the human rights for the respective groups and communities within their remit.
“Our national commissioners cannot rely on individual advocacy efforts, alone. They need to be more independent of the executive authorities and stand in their full integrity. They must have the power not only to recommend, but also to enforce,” President Coleiro Preca said, adding that there must be scope for watchdogs and guardians within our international structures, to ensure that nobody remains voiceless or is left behind, when their human rights are violated.
For this reason, the President called upon the government authorities to make next year’s 70th Anniversary of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, an opportunity to empower the national commissioners in our country, stating that “this would be the most appropriate way to celebrate this milestone, by taking our democracy and our commitment to human rights to the next level.”
In this way, the President said, universal human rights, and fundamental freedoms, will be promoted and protected for the benefit of all the inhabitants of the Maltese Islands.