United Nations Secretary-General António Guterres has appointed Pramila Patten of Mauritius as his Special Representative on Sexual Violence in Conflict at the level of Under-Secretary-General. She will succeed Zainab Hawa Bangura of Sierra Leone, to whom the Secretary-General is grateful for her dedicated service and commitment to the United Nations.
Ms. Patten, a practising barrister-at-law, having served since 2003 as a member of the Committee on the Elimination of all Forms of Discrimination against Women. She brings solid and diversified judicial expertise in sexual and gender-based violence, as well as in women, peace and security issues. Since 2014, she has been a member of the High-Level Advisory Group for the Global Study on Implementation of Security Council resolution 1325 (2000) on women, peace and security, and since 2010, a member of the Advisory Panel for the African Women’s Rights Observatory within the United Nations Economic Commission for Africa.
Between 2012 and 2014, Ms. Patten was a member of the Advisory Committee of the Due Diligence Framework Project, having previously served as an adviser in her country’s Ministry of Women’s Rights, Child Development and Family Welfare from 2000 to 2004; a member of International Women’s Rights Action Watch from 1993 to 2002; and a Commissioner appointed by the United Nations Secretary-General to the International Commission of Inquiry into the Massacre in Guinea Conakry, in 2009. She was a lecturer in the Faculty of Law at the University of Mauritius between 1987 and 1992, serving also as a District Court Magistrate from 1987 to 1988.
Born in 1958, Ms. Patten holds a Master of Laws degree from University College, London, and a Bachelor of Laws from Ealing College of Higher Education in the United Kingdom.