Tuesday, 26 April 2016


A cross-section of CSOs in Uganda have petitioned the ICC to support to victims' legal representatives in the trial of the ICC Prosecutor Vs Dominic Ongwen. On 23 march 2016, the Pre-Trial Chamber II of the International Criminal Court (ICC) confirmed 70 charges brought by the ICC Prosecutor against Dominic Ongwen and committed him to trial before a Trial Chamber. Prior to its decision confirming charges against Dominic Ongwen, the ICC recognized the right of victims to appoint their own legal representative BUT in the same breath denied the victims’ chosen legal representatives access to the Court’s legal aid. For legal representation to be both effective and meaningful, legal representatives and their teams have to dedicate a substantial amount of time particularly in cases such as that involving DOMINIC ONGWEN which has numerous participating victims and voluminous evidence. If legal representatives are required to carry out their victims’ related work pro bono and earn a living from other legal work, this may impact on the time they are able to devote to the representation of victims. This statement therefore calls upon the ICC to go beyond recognition and provide legal aid as well. The statement can be accessed HERE or at:https://drive.google.com/file/d/0B8mSmNvPrstMQWUtSW0zQnczc28/view?usp=sharing

Thursday, 14 April 2016

Community Views on the Trial of Thomas Kwoyelo and the Need for Community Outreach

Colonel Thomas Kwoyelo is a former LRA commander who is currently facing charges of war crimes and crimes against humanity before the International Crimes Division (ICD) of the High Court of Uganda. Although authorities arrested Kwoyelo in 2008, his trial is only scheduled to begin this May. This commentary focuses on views of community members in anticipation of his upcoming trial.

On Monday April 4, 2016, the Foundation for Justice and Development Initiatives (FJDI) in collaboration with Avocats Sans Frontières (ASF) facilitated five community representatives from Pabo to attend the pre-trial hearing in Kampala. Two days later, on April 7,  the two organizations held a community dialogue in Pabo to sensitize the community members about the outcome of the pre-trial hearing. Pabo and the surrounding areas is not only the home area of Kwoyelo, but it is also the location in which he is alleged to have committed most of the crimes he is charged with. In the evening of that same day, ASF and FJDI representatives held a radio talk show on Gulu FM Radio, in Gulu Town, still with the aim of sensitizing the wider public about the upcoming trial.

Read the full report about the above activity and community views on the trial of Thomas Kwoyelo at:READ MORE