Yash Ghai

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Yash Pal Ghai
Chairman of the 2013 Constitutional Commission, Fiji Commission
In office
June 2012 – December 2012
President Epeli Nailatikau
Personal details
Born (1938-10-20) 20 October 1938 (age 79)
Nairobi, Kenya Colony
Nationality Kenyan Kenyan[citation needed]
Political party Independent
Alma mater Oxford (BA), (MA), (DCL)
Harvard University (LLM)
Occupation Constitutional Lawyer
Profession Lawyer
Positions Professor, UEADAR (1968-70)
Lecturer, Yale Law (1971-73)
Research fellow, Uppsala (1973-78)
Professor, Warwick (1978-89)
Professor, HKU (1989-)

Yash Pal Ghai (born 20 October 1938) is a Kenyan academic in constitutional law. As of 2007 he is the head of the Constitution Advisory Support Unit of the United Nations Development Programme in Nepal. Until 2008, he was a Special Representative of the UN Secretary General in Cambodia on human rights. In September 2008, he resigned his post, following bitter arguments with the Government of Cambodia. [1] He has been a Fellow of the British Academy since 2005.

Early life and education[edit]

His grandparents were Khukhrain who came from North India, and were part of the waves of migration sponsored by the British Empire. His father sent Ghai to Oxford University to study.[1]


He was the Sir YK Pao Professor of Public Law at the University of Hong Kong starting in 1989. He has been an Honorary Professor there since his retirement in 2005. Prior to that, Ghai taught and did research in law at the University of Warwick, Uppsala University in Sweden, the International Legal Center in New York City, and Yale Law School. He has also taught courses at the University of Wisconsin Law School, as part of an exchange program.[2] He was the Chairman of the Constitution of Kenya Review Commission (which attempted to write a modern constitution for Kenya) from 2000 to 2004. Professor Ghai is also recently selected by the Fijian Military Government to be the Chairperson of Fiji's Constitutional Committee.

Ghai has also advised and assisted NGOs on human rights law-related work. He drafted the Asian Human Rights Charter—A People's Charter, a project of the Asian Human Rights Commission.

Ghai has written several books on law in Africa, the Pacific islands, and elsewhere.[where?]

Honours and awards[edit]

Professor Ghai has received the following honours and awards:[1]





  1. ^ a b "Professor Yash Ghai C.V" (PDF). University of Hong Kong. Retrieved 31 March 2013. 
  2. ^ "Scholarly Exchange and Visitors - University of Wisconsin Law School". 
  3. ^ Yash Pal Ghai Not found in London Gazette 1969-1991

External links[edit]