Kofi Annan in Mansfield to open new centre

He was a guest of of honour at the opening ceremony of the Bonavero Institute of Human Rights

Kofi Annan visited Oxford this afternoon, speaking as a guest of of honour at the opening ceremony of the Bonavero Institute of Human Rights.

The Institute, which is part of the University’s Law Faculty, has been housed in Mansfield College since October 2017. It aims to conduct research in the field of human rights law and encourage public engagement in human rights issues.

The Institute states that part of its mission will be to “establish a vibrant community of graduate students”, as well as “host outstanding scholars of law and other disciplines”.

The initial idea for the Institute came from human rights lawyer Baroness Helena Kennedy QC, who will leave her position as Principal of Mansfield College at the end of the academic year.

The new institute will be directed by Professor Kate O’Reagan, a legal practitioner and scholar, who was appointed by Nelson Mandela to be a judge on the Constitutional Court of South Africa in 1994.

Both Kennedy and O’Reagan spoke at the ceremony, with the chancellor of the University, Lord Patten, also making a speech.

Baroness Kennedy thanked the donors to the institute, who were gathered to watch the ceremony, whilst Lord Patten paid tribute to Mansfield College “for having the energy to push this project through”.