Shuaib Chalklen

Founder and chairperson of the African Disability Forum and former United Nations Special Rapporteur on Disability, South Africa.

Shuaib Chalklen is the founder and current chairperson of the African Disability Forum, a continental organization representing the voice of Africans with all disabilities, with its headquarters in Addis Ababa.

From 2009 to 2014 Shuaib Chalklen held the position of Special Rapporteur on Disability of the Commission for Social Development. The mandate of the Special Rapporteur is to monitor the implementation of the standard rules on the equalization of opportunities for people with disabilities, as adopted by the General Assembly in 1993, and to advance the status of persons with disabilities throughout the world.

Throughout the years, Mr. Chalklen has made a name for himself as a prominent leader in his area of work by constantly providing invaluable contributions within both regional and global frameworks. In 2003, he founded the Secretariat for the African Decade of Disabled Persons where he held the position of Chief Executive Officer until 2006. The Secretariat for the African Decade of Disabled Persons was established for the purpose of encouraging the implementation of the continental plan of action in Africa. This plan is supposed to serve as a guideline for all member states in the formulation of their national programmes on disability issues.

In the past, Mr. Chalklen has held a number of central  positions in the field of disability, governance and administration at the national, regional and global level, including Director of the Office on the Status of Disabled Persons in the Presidency of South Africa (1996-2001) and Senior Policy Analyst in the Presidency of South Africa (2006-2007).

Mr. Chalklen has worked closely with the United Nations, the World Bank, and other entities of the United Nations system, as well as bilateral donor countries in Europe and other regions. He was awarded a bachelor’s degree in social science from the University of Cape Town (1991) and has also studied at the University of Manchester (Institute of Science and Technology) and the Senior Executive Program of Harvard University.