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Legal Researcher at the African Union

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The African Union (AU) is a continental body consisting of the 55 member states that make up the countries of the African Continent. It was officially launched in 2002 as a successor to the Organization of African Unity (OAU, 1963-1999). We are an Integrated, Prosperous and Peaceful Africa, driven by its own citizens and representing a dynamic force in the global arena.

We are recruiting to fill the position below:


Job Title: Legal Researcher

Requisition ID: 1426
Location:  Maseru, Lesotho
Reports to: Senior Legal Officer
Directorate / Department: Health, Humanitarian Affairs and Social Development
Division: African Committee of Experts on the Rights and Welfare of the Child (ACERWC)
Number of Direct Reports: 0
Number of Indirect Reports: 0
Job Grade: P2
Contract Type: Fixed Term

Purpose of Job

  • The ACERWC is a human rights organ of the AU with the mandate to promote and protect the rights and welfare of children in Africa.
  • The Committee was established by the Organization of African Unity (OAU), now the African Union (AU), by virtue of Article 32 of the African Charter on the Rights and Welfare of the Child (The African Children’s Charter) to monitor the implementation of the Charter.
  • In view of the above background, the AU invites qualified and competent applicants who are citizens of Member States of the African Union with relevant skills, competencies and experiences to submit their applications for the position of Legal Researchers at the Secretariat of the ACERWC based in Maseru, the Kingdom of Lesotho.
  • The Legal Researcher shall provide support in the timely production of the ACERWC’s documents under its promotion and protection mandate.

Main Functions

  • Provide technical support in the following up of activities of the unit of assignment and in area of expertise, including monitoring and evaluating progress made of planned activities in line with a predefined work plan.
  • Suggest new and expand on existing policy in area of expertise.
  • Participate in providing required technical support during organisation of meetings, congresses and conferences with stakeholders.
  • Engage with relevant stakeholders and develop working relationships.
  • Assist in drafting reports and participate in the preparation of budget and work programmes related to the area of intervention
  • Provide technical support to internal and external stakeholders as required.
  • Contribute in conducting analysis and generate accurate reports in a timely manner for the respective Unit/Division and AU’s internal use.
  • Assist in setting the overall research direction of a relevant policy area.
  • Responsible for the delegation and execution of defined research areas.

Specific Responsibilities

  • Prepare the various documents for the State Party Reporting mechanisms before the ACERWC including developing the list of issues, concluding observations;
  • Produce periodic research reports on issues related to the Committee’s promotional mandate including specific thematic research and progress reports on the implementation of the ACRWC and various policy instruments and decisions on the rights of children;
  • Assist the Secretariat in drafting General Comments of the ACERWC on selected provisions of the Charter;
  • Collect decisions of child rights cases from domestic jurisdictions which can be regularly fed into the case law database;
  • Prepare the relevant documents around the complementary reports submitted by Civil Society Organizations.
  • Prepare the documents around the Communication mandate of the Committee;
  • Prepare summary of facts, draft decisions and legal briefs and present before the ACERWC;
  • Undertake extensive legal research into issues raised in the various communications;
  • Performs any other related duties as requested by supervisor.

Academic Requirements and Relevant Experience

  • A Bachelor Degree in Law, Human Rights or other human rights related studies with five (5) years of relevant work experience. Supervisory will be an added advantage. OR
  • A Master’s Degree in Law, Human Rights or other human rights related studies, with at least two (2) years of relevant work experience as indicated above
  • Relevant experience working on child rights issues in Africa
  • Relevant exposure to the work of the ACERWC and the African Human Rights System will be a preferred advantage.
  • Previous experience with a human rights organization, especially a child rights organization, at a regional, continental or international level, will be an added advantage.
  • Excellent knowledge and understanding of the African human rights instruments and institutions

Required Skills:

  • Strong analytical skills and ability to prepare legal opinions.
  • Excellent drafting skills
  • Ability to liaise with a diverse range of people and stakeholders;
  • Ability to work independently to meet critical and competing deadlines (multi-tasking), to produce high quality work in short timeframes;
  • Applicants must be proficient in one of the African Union working languages (Arabic, English, French, Portuguese or Spanish). Knowledge of one more or several other working languages would be an added advantage.
  • Excellent interpersonal skills and ability to organize and work under pressure in a multi-cultural environment.
  • Good communication and planning skills and excellent knowledge of international organizations.
  • Ability to work in a multicultural environment;

Leadership Competencies:

  • Change Management
  • Managing Risk

Core Competencies:

  • Teamwork and Collaboration;
  • Accountability awareness and Compliance;
  • Learning Orientation
  • Communicating with Influence:

Functional Competencies:

  • Analytical Thinking and Problem Solving
  • Job Knowledge and information sharing
  • Drive for Results
  • Continuous Improvement Focus.

Tenure of Appointment

  • The Appointment will be made on a fixed term contract for a period of one (1) year, of which the first three (3) months will be considered as a probationary period. Thereafter, the contract may be renewed for a similar period subject to funding availability, satisfactory performance and agreed deliverables.


  • Proficiency in one of the AU working languages (Arabic, English, French, Portuguese, and Spanish) and fluency in another AU language is an added advantage.

The salary attached to the position is an annual lump-sum of USD88,381.02 (P2 Step 5) inclusive of all allowances for internationally recruited staff, and USD70,805.71  inclusive of all allowances for locally recruited staff of the African Union Commission.


How to Apply
Interested and qualified candidates should:
Click here to apply

Application Deadline  7th November 2022.


  • Only candidates who have met all the requirements of the post and have been selected for an interview will be contacted.
  • Only applications registered online with a complete curriculum vitae (CV) attached will be considered.
  • The Africa Union is an equal opportunity employer and female candidates are strongly encouraged to apply.
  • Gender Mainstreaming: The AU Commission is an equal opportunity employer and qualified women are strongly encouraged to apply