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Ratification of the Convention by Liberia on July 26, 2012

The Liberia Government as a result of intense advocacy from the Disability Movement (NUOD) and Civil Society Organizations (CSOs) in Liberia, has deposited the ratified version of the CRPD on the Country’s 165th Anniversary (July 26, 2012).

On 26th July 2012, the Liberian Government formally confirmed the depositing of the CRPD through its Mission at the United Nations Headquarters in New York. The ratification of the Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities has been authorized by the Liberian parliament on September 9, 2008 and signed by the President on October 6, 2008. Since then, confirming with UN Headquarters the ratification of the instrument has been a challenge for the Government which delays invited intense advocacy from the disability movement (NUOD) and Civil Society Organizations. In the recent past (weeks), NUOD vowed through a strong-worded letter to the Minister of Foreign Affairs that it will intensify its advocacy and campaigns aimed at pressuring the Government of Liberia to deposit the ratified CRPD to New York. This laudable action on the part of Government is yet to be public knowledge for a large segment of the Liberian citizenry and NUOD is yet to come out with a press release on the development . The Ministry of Foreign Affairs was invited during the UNCRPD Training organised by Handicap International in April 2012 and further requested to state the status of the Convention since its passage into law by the Liberian Government in October 2008. The CRPD amongst other things requires States parties to come up with a State Report after two years of Country-level implementation of the Convention. With the Convention constituting the Liberian legal framework, obliges the Government to report on implementation status of the UNCRPD under the period. The Liberian Government can concretely come out with a State Report only in the event were it deposits the ratified instrument to UN Headquarters. This depositing by the Liberian Government is welcome news in the context of the Government of Liberia’s commitment to concretely ensure the realization of the UNCRPD in Liberia.

To date, the Convention has 153 signatories, including the 118 formally ratified. The Optional Protocol has 90 signatories, of which 71 have officially ratified. See http://www.un.org/disabilities

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