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Human Rights Head Should Resign Now

27 March, 2004

Responding to reports that the head of the Human Rights Commission Brice Dickson is to step down from his position next February, Sinn Féin spokesperson on Human Rights Caitriona Ruane said that Professor Dickson should 'go and go now'.

Ms Ruane said:

"Sinn Féin in common with many different human rights organizations have been critical of the performance of Brice Dickson as head of the Human Rights Commission. We have called publicly for him to be removed from this position.

"Brice Dickson should not hang on until next February, he should go and go now. His departure would hopefully provide the necessary space in which the range of problems which currently exist can be adequately addressed. These include powers, resourcing and of course make up. We would also have very real concerns about the mechanism to select new Commissioners after the current Commission steps down.

"Sinn Féin will continue to raise our concerns about the operation of the Human Rights Commission with the British government until the necessary changes are enacted to allow the Commission to fulfill the function demanded of it by the Good Friday Agreement."ENDS

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