UP academic plays integral part in the compilation of the Abidjan Principles

Posted on April 05, 2019

The University of Pretoria’s (UP)  Professor Ann Skelton, the UNESCO Chair in Education Law in Africa, situated in the Faculty of Law, has played an integral role in the compilation of the Abidjan Principles, which were officially released recently.

The Abidjan Principles unpack states’ obligation to provide public education and regulate private involvement in education, while respecting liberties and dignity in education and simultaneously regulating private actors in education. It promises to be the new reference point for governments, educators and education providers when debating the respective roles and duties of states and private actors in education. They compile and unpack existing legal obligations that states have regarding the delivery of education and in particular, the role and limitations of private actors that provide education. The Principles provide more details about what international human rights law means by drawing from other sources of law and existing authoritative interpretations.

As Chair of the Drafting Committee of the Abidjan Principles, Prof Skelton played a vital role in the consultations and the compilation of the Abidjan Principles. The Drafting Committee, consisting of nine members, has been busy since June 2018 to finalise the Abidjan Principles for adoption.  Its mandate was to unpack information received through consultations with and commentary from experts, as well as authoritative interpretations, which were utilised to compile international human rights law principles and provide guidance on the implementation in practice, in the context of the rapid expansion of private-sector involvement in education.

Another member of the group of experts with a link to UP is Dr Faranaaz Veriava. She is an extraordinary lecturer in the Department of Private Law and is the Head of Basic Education at Section27

Prof Skelton is also a United Nations Member on the Rights of the Child.

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