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ILO High Level Team to Visit Myanmar

GENEVA (ILO News) -The composition of a High Level Team due to visit Myanmar for a three-week period next month to assess Government actions on forced labour was announced today by the International Labour Office (ILO) Director-General Juan Somavia.

Press release | 21 August 2001

GENEVA (ILO News) -The composition of a High Level Team due to visit Myanmar for a three-week period next month to assess Government actions on forced labour was announced today by the International Labour Office (ILO) Director-General Juan Somavia.

The team is composed of The Right Honourable Sir Ninian STEPHEN of Australia (Chair); Ms. Nieves ROLDAN-CONFESOR of the Philippines (Vice-Chair); Mr. Kulatilaka Arthanayake Parinda RANASINGHE of Sri Lanka and Mr. Jerzy MAKARCZYK of Poland, as members.

The establishment of the Team, which was agreed in May and considered by the International Labour Conference at its June 2001 session, is a new and significant development which follows a series of steps taken by the ILO's competent bodies to secure compliance by Myanmar with its obligations under ILO Convention No. 29 (1930) concerning forced labour.

The mandate of the Team is to make an objective assessment of the practical implementation and actual impact of various legislative, executive and administrative measures announced by the Government in response to previous ILO action, with a view to determining whether these measures have been effective in eliminating the practice of forced labour. In making its assessment, the Team will take into account in particular the views expressed recently on this matter by the ILO Committee of Experts on the Application of Conventions and Recommendations.

In carrying out its mandate, the Team will have full discretion to establish a programme of such contacts and visits as it considers appropriate across the country. It is anticipated that it will visit Myanmar in mid-September and spend up to three weeks in the country. It is due to report to the Governing Body at its November 2001 session.

Biographical information of the team is as follows:

Chair: The Right Honourable Sir Ninian STEPHEN, KG, AK, GCMG, GCVO, KBE, PC (Australia), former Governor-General of Australia; former Justice of the High Court of Australia; former Chairman, Strand Two of the Talks on Northern Ireland; former Judge of the United Nations International Criminal Tribunals for the former Yugoslavia and Rwanda; former Commonwealth of Nations Special Envoy to Bangladesh; former Chairman, United Nations Expert Group on Cambodia; former Australian Special Ambassador for the Environment; former Chairman, Constitutional Centenary Foundation; former Chairman, Antarctic Foundation; former Chairman, National Library of Australia; former Chairman, Australian Banking Industry Ombudsman Council; Chair, Australian Citizenship Council; Chair, Australian Blood and Blood Products Review; member of the Ethics Commission of the International Olympic Committee.

Vice-Chair: Ms. Nieves ROLDAN-CONFESOR (Philippines), former Philippines Secretary of Labour and Employment; former Presidential Adviser on International Labour Affairs; former Chair, ILO Governing Body; former board member of the Landbank of the Philippines, the Social Security Commission, the National Wages and Productivity Commission, the Technical Education and Skills Development Authority, the Philippine Agrarian Reform Council, and the National Economic Planning Council; former head of the Panel of Experts to the Congressional Commission on Labour; former Chair, ASEAN Labour Ministers' Meeting; expert-adviser to the ILO Governing Body on the follow up to the ILO Declaration on Fundamental Principles and Rights at Work ; member of the Operating Council of the Global Alliance for Workers and Their Communities; faculty member, Asian Institute of Management.

Member: Mr. Kulatilaka Arthanayake Parinda RANASINGHE (Sri Lanka), former Chief Justice of Sri Lanka; former member of Judicial Tribunal to inquire into allegations made against the then Head of the Judiciary of Malaysia; former Visiting Expert, United Nations Asia and Far East Institute for the Prevention of Crime and Treatment of Offenders, Tokyo; member of several Arbitral Tribunals dealing with Commercial Arbitration; President, Sri Lanka Chapter of the Asia Crime Prevention Foundation.

Member: Mr. Jerzy MAKARCZYK, LL.D (Poland), Judge, European Court of Human Rights; Professor of Public International Law, Institute of Legal Sciences, Polish Academy of Sciences; former Deputy Minister of Foreign Affairs; former Secretary of State, Ministry of Foreign Affairs; in charge of negotiations with USSR and then Russia on withdrawal of troops from Polish territory; in charge of negotiations for the admission of Poland to the Council of Europe; former President, International Law Association; associate member, Institute of International Law; has given lectures, seminars and acted as a consultant at various universities in Japan, South Korea, Sri Lanka, India, Thailand and the Philippines.