Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights Human Rights Officer Jobs in South Africa

Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights Human Rights Officer Jobs in South Africa

Org. Setting and Reporting

These positions are located in the Regional Office for Addis Ababa (Ethiopia), Pretoria (South Africa), Bangkok (Thailand), and Suva (Fiji) in the Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights (OHCHR).

The incumbents will work under the direct supervision of the Regional Representative in their respective duty station, and under the overall guidance of the Chief of the Universal Periodic Review (UPR) Branch.

Important Note:

In the motivation letter of your application, please indicate the duty station you would be interested in. If you are interested in more than one, please rank them in order of preference – with *1 being the preferred position.


Within delegated authority, the Human Rights Officer will be responsible for the following duties:

• Reviews, monitors and evaluates activities relating to the implementation of international human rights instruments, including recommendations of treaty bodies and mechanisms of the Human Rights Council. In follow up to UPR recommendations, supports the work of treaty-established bodies and extra-conventional mechanisms including special procedures.

• Prepares relevant human rights parts of reports for the General Assembly, Human Rights Council (HRC),etc. notes on the status of ratification of human rights instruments, etc.

• Prepares inputs for discussions on prevention related matters, including Regional Monthly Reviews (RMRs) and other relevant initiatives and identifies risk areas from recommendations from the UPR and other human rights mechanisms.

• Advises State authorities, civil society, United Nations Country Teams (UNCTs) and OHCHR field presences in the region on the use of the available sources of financial and technical assistance, including the UPR Voluntary Funds, and facilitates country-to-country exchanges of good practices on engaging with UPR and other human rights mechanisms’ and implementing their recommendations.

• Organizes capacity-building activities for States and other stakeholders on engaging with the human rights mechanisms, including the UPR, on establishing or strengthening national mechanisms for reporting and follow-up, and the use of the other digital tools developed by OHCHR.

• Meets regularly with UN staff national officials and civil society to plan projects related to the UPR and other human rights mechanisms, review project activities, and identify good practices.

• Works with States, UN entities and non-governmental organizations in the country/region to integrate human rights, including their gender and Leave No One Behind (LNOB) dimensions, in their programs.

• Designs, implements and evaluates human rights programmes related to the UPR and other human rights mechanisms.

• Ensures up-to-date information regarding substantive matters in the field of human rights and makes recommendations
on actions to take.

• Makes contact with other sectors of the UN, other international organizations and governments on coordination and policy matters; brief representatives and provides, as appropriate, suggestions and recommendations.

• Performs other related duties as required.



Knowledge of and exposure to a range of human rights issues including approaches and techniques to address sensitive and complex human rights problems in their political, ethnic, racial, gender and socio-economic dimensions. Knowledge of human rights mechanisms, in particular the universal periodic review. Knowledge of institutional mandates of human rights organizations, prevailing policies and procedures.


Works collaboratively with colleagues to achieve organizational goals; solicits input by genuinely valuing others’ ideas and expertise; is willing to learn from others; places team agenda before personal agenda; supports and acts in accordance with final group decision, even when such decisions may not entirely reflect own position.

Planning & Organizing:

Develops clear goals that are consistent with agreed strategies; identifies priority activities and assignments; adjusts priorities as required; allocates appropriate amount of time and resources for completing work; foresees risks and allows for contingencies when planning; monitors and adjusts plans and actions as necessary; uses time efficiently.


  • 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.

    Work Experience

  • A minimum of seven (7) years of progressively responsible experience in human rights, political affairs, international relations, law or related area is required.

  • Experience with the universal periodic review or other human rights mechanism is desirable.

  • Experience in capacity building and implementing technical cooperation projects is desirable.

  • Field experience is desirable.


  • English and French are the working languages of the United Nations Secretariat. For the positions advertised, fluency in English (both oral and written) is required. Knowledge of French is desirable.

    How to Apply

    For more information and job application details, see; Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights Human Rights Officer Jobs in South Africa

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