The Commissioners of the Human Rights Commission have confirmed that during their statutory meeting held on 8th November 2023, it was unanimously resolved to suspend the Commission Director, Mrs. Sindiso Ngatsha Sichone, in order to facilitate an independent disciplinary process against her.

The Commissioners have noted that various internal documents relating to the disciplinary process have been availed to some selected media institutions.

However, in the interest of confidentiality relating to the employer-employee relationship and common decorum, the Commission will not delve into the details for the disciplinary action against Mrs. Sichone.

Further, the Commissioners has refuted the unfounded allegations that there was an external influence in their unanimous decision to institute independent disciplinary measures against the Director.

It must be noted that the Commissioners are empowered by the Human Rights Commission Act, Chapter 48 of the Laws of Zambia, to provide oversight on the operations of the Commission and are the Director’s supervisory employers.

It must therefore be understood that the Commission Chairperson, Dr. Pamela Towela Sambo, was acting on behalf of all the Commissioners in all the communications to, and decisions against, the suspended Director.

The disciplinary hearing was conducted in an independent, professional, impartial and non-discriminatory manner in accordance with the well-established ethos of the Commission.

The Commissioners assured all stakeholders and members of the public that the disciplinary process against the suspended Director has not in anyway affected its operations.

The Commission is normally carrying out its constitutional and statutory functions.

Therefore, victims of human rights violations and abuses are encouraged to continue reporting and/or following up such cases with the Commission.

Finally, unless it becomes absolutely necessary and justifiable, the Commissioners will not comment any further on this matter as it is currently before the Attorney General, who is representing the Commission, and Mrs. Sichone’s legal representatives.

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