Business & human rights treaty debate
- Anna Bulman, Legal Resources Centre
On 19 February, CALS co-hosted a debate on the binding treaty on transnational corporations with the Legal Resources Centre (LRC). Panellists included Ana María Suárez Franco (FIAN International), Alan Fine (Russell & Associates) and Nomonde Nyembe (CALS) while Mabatho Molokomme (LRC) facilitated. The debate proved an engaging platform for a diverse range of people to meet and talk corporate accountability.
Anna Bulman of the LRC presents some of the stories and opinions that were shared at the public debate in her piece 'South Africa debates the merits of the proposed treaty' on the LRC's blog Realising Rights. Questions included the following:
- What current mechanisms do we have to address corporate human rights abuses and crimes and are they adequate? Is there a need for a Treaty? Might the Treaty distract from achieving short-term gains?
- What are some major concerns that need to be addressed?
- What content should the Treaty cover?
- What is the relevance of extra-territorial obligations?
- We need country ratification for the realisation of a Treaty. Even if NGOs support it, would it not jeopardise ratification to include economic social and cultural rights considerations?
- What can African civil society bring to the corporate accountability table?