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May 2013 Newsletter

The Headlines

The following are the news stories featured in this issue:

Secretariat News
News from other Organizations
Upcoming Events
Advertisements and Vacancies

 
Secretariat News

PALU To Establish A Directory Of Leading African Commercial Lawyers And Law Firms

The African Legal Support Facility (ALSF), and the African Development Bank (AfDB) Group in general, have requested the Pan African Lawyers Union (PALU) to develop comprehensive list (Directory) of the leading commercial lawyers in all of the fifty-five (55) African countries. From time to time, several other partners, including the World Bank Group, similarly request PALU for details or lists of African legal practitioners.

The African Legal Support Facility (ALSF) and the African Development Bank (AfDB) Group will use the Directory provided by PALU to appoint lawyers and law firms to advise or represent them, or their Member Countries, in complex international commercial negotiations and complex international dispute resolution (litigation and arbitration).

To qualify for inclusion in the Directory, candidates must:
  • Be advocates who have practiced commercial law for at least ten (10) years;
  • Be a member in good standing of a national Bar Association or Law Society; and
  • Have a proven track record in complex commercial negotiations and/or dispute resolution.
We also encourage academics who have researched and/ or taught international commercial law for at least ten (10) years to enlist.

We will develop this Directory from our African Lawyers’ Database, on our web-site. This online facility on our web-site allows any African lawyer, free of charge, to sign up and to provide details of their area of practice/ interest. Thereafter, those who wish can continue and take up either Ordinary Membership, Life Membership or Special Endowment Membership of PALU, right from our web-site. The online facility is available at http://lawyersofafrica.org/register/

While registration on the facility, and for purposes of the said Directory is free, naturally priority will be given to paid-up members of PALU.

Deadline: For the first edition of the Directory to ALSF and AfDB, we will limit entries to those who will have completed the registration process no later than Friday 14th June 2013.

To ensure that you are on the continental legal map, we encourage all lawyers on the continent to sign-up. We further encourage you to forward this message to all other interested lawyers and networks who specialise in this field.

If you require additional information, or if you have any challenges in the online registration process, please contact us at secretariat@lawyersofafrica.org  

Join PALU Online Community!

The Pan African Lawyers Union has created an online interactive platform in order to improve the online experience of our members and our efficiency as an organisation.
 
Amongst other things, the platform provides a premier continental networking platform and unprecedented access to a comprehensive network of distinguished and game-changing African legal dignitaries, decision-makers, professionals and scholars. By registering online, you will immediately become part of our online Directory of African lawyers and have the opportunity to interact within our online forums and groups. This will enable you to make connections, meet other practitioners and enjoy the opportunity to enlarge your professional horizons.  
 
Furthermore, registering online will give us the opportunity to better communicate and interact with you and receive comments and feedback on the services offered to our membership.

We kindly request you to take a few minutes and register on the following link: http://lawyersofafrica.org/register/ in order for you to begin enjoying the benefits our online platform has to offer as well as taking advantage of your PALU membership to the fullest.

PALU Yearbook Available for Sale!

We have good news for all our subscribers. The much anticipated Pan African Yearbook of Law is now available!

This initial edition of the Yearbook proposes articles by leading authors on a variety of topical issues of interest for legal practitioners on the continent.

The articles you will find herein are detailed as follows:
  • Unconstitutional Regime Change: Trend Perspectives and Political Requisites for Stricter Law Enforcement, by Dr. Costantinos Berhuétesfa (BT) Costantinos;
  • The Arab Uprising: Implications for Self-Determination and Good Governance in the African Union, by Diala Anthony Chima;
  • Constitutional Entrenchment as an Effective and Sustainable Basis for Attacking Africa’s Endemic Corruption, by Charles Manga Fombad;
  • The Predicament of African Regional Courts: Lessons from the Southern African Development Community Tribunal, by Phazha Jimmy Ngandwe;
  • Drafting a Protocol to Extend the Jurisdiction of the East African Court of Justice, by Dr. Alex Obote-Odora;
  • A Critical Analysis of Article 14(1) (E) Of the African Women’s Protocol: Duty To Disclose One’s HIV Status To A Sexual Partner, by Ngcimezile Nia Mweso.
For details on purchase and delivery options please visit our website on www.lawyersoafrica.org or contact Ms. Abiha Kasmani at akasmani@lawyersofafrica.org.

PALU Holds A Membership Activity and Seminar

On 3rd May PALU held a Membership Recruitment Activity and Seminar on the theme “Recent Developments in International Law in Africa”. During the seminar, the President of the African Court on Human and Peoples’ Rights (African Court), Honorable Justice Sophia Akuffo made a presentation on ‘Perspectives and Recent Developments of the Court’. Following that, Mr. Stephen Agaba, Principal Legal Officer of the East African Community and Mr. Richard Karegyesa, Officer in Charge & Head of the Office of the Prosecutor at the UN Mechanism for International Criminal Tribunals presented perspectives of their respective institutions. Within this context, the CEO of PALU, Mr. Donald Deya, discussed some aspects of the work of PALU, its future orientation as identified through our most recent strategic planning and the value proposition of PALU.

PALU would like to thank all the participants and presenters for helping make the event a success. We would especially like to thank Tanzania Breweries Limited, Kibo Palace and Resorts, Advocate Edward Mrosso and Tanzania Distillers Limited for their sponsorship which contributed towards making the event a success.

Civil Society Forum on Sudan and South Sudan


PALU took part in the 2nd session on the Civil Society Forum on Sudan and South Sudan in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia from 16th-18th May. The Forum was part of the pre-Summit NGO contribution to the 21st Ordinary Session of the African Union's Assembly of Heads of State and Government.

For more information on the event you can contact info@darfurcentre.ch.

WABA & Legal Resources Consortium (LRC) CSO Meeting on Engaging the UN Human Rights Council

PALU took part in the LRC regional meeting on facilitating CSOs engagement with the United Nations Human Rights Council (UNHRC) from 8th to 11th May in Lagos, Nigeria. The purpose of the meeting was to initiate dialogue and possible plan of action on strengthening the participation of African Human Rights NGOs within the UNHRC.
The objectives of the meeting were:
  • To expose African Human Rights NGOs to the important opportunities provided by the UNHRC for the promotion and protection of human rights even at the national levels;
  • To agree on modalities for collaboration and cooperation between participating organizations in accessing the UNHRC.
Auschwitz Institute To Hold Conference On Genocide Prevention

PALU will take part as a moderator in a conference on the theme “Best Practices and New Opportunities in Genocide Prevention: Governmental Action, Technology, and Regional Contexts”. The conference which will be held from 27th to 28th May will be hosted by the Auschwitz Institute in collaboration with the Tanzanian Ministry of Constitutional and Legal Affairs, Ministry of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation, the UN Office of Genocide Prevention and Responsibility to Protect.

For more information, you can contact Lily Samuels through email at: lily.samuels@auschwitzinstitute.org.

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News from Other Organizations

Botswana Ratifies ICC Amendment On Crime of Aggression

On 15th April 2013 Botswana President Ian Khama signed the instruments of ratification of the Kampala Amendments to the Rome Statute of the International Criminal Court (ICC). Botswana is the first African State and the sixth in the world to ratify the Kampala Amendments. The other states that have ratified the Amendments are Estonia, Liechtenstein, Luxemburg, Samoa, and Trinidad and Tobago.

PALU congratulates the nation of Botswana on this important step towards fighting impunity and encourages other states to follow this example.  

African Court of Human and Peoples’ Rights (African Court) Holds Regional Sensitization Seminar for West Africa

On 8th May the African Court in collaboration with the Government of Cote d’Ivoire held a regional sensitization seminar on the promotion of the Court in West Africa. The seminar was on the theme: “The African Court Of Human And Peoples’ Rights: Your New Partner To Reinforce The Protection Of Human Rights In Africa.”

The objectives of the seminar among others were to:
  • Reinforce the protection of human rights in Africa through sensitizing the public on the activities of the Court;
  • Encourage countries to ratify the protocol establishing the African Court of Human and Peoples’ Rights and/or to make the declaration provided for in Article 34 (6) of the Protocol establishing the Court, allowing individuals and NGOs direct access to the Court after exhaustion of local remedies;
  • Encourage the public to use the Court to settle human rights disputes; and encourage States to seek the Court’s advisory opinion on important human rights issues.
For further details you can visit the African Court link below:

http://www.african-court.org/en/index.php/news/press-releases-2/386-the-regional-sensitization-seminar-on-the-promotion-of-the-court-for-west-africa-opens-in-abidjan

Africa Celebrates 50th Anniversary of the Organisation of African Unity

The year 2013 marks the 50th anniversary celebration of the formation of the OAU. The 50th Anniversary commemorations will be anchored by the theme “Pan Africanism and the African Renaissance”. Consequently, the Heads of State declared the year 2013 the Year of Pan-Africanism and the African Renaissance.

It will also be a little more than a decade since the formation of the African Union (AU), which seeks to promote “an integrated, prosperous and peaceful Africa driven by its own citizens and representing a dynamic force in global arena”.

The anniversary is expected to facilitate and celebrate African narratives of past, present and future that will enthuse and energize the African population and use their constructive energy to accelerate a forward looking agenda of Pan-Africanism and renaissance in the 21st century. It provides a unique opportunity and comes at a moment when Africa is on the rise, and must therefore build its confidence in its future. The 50th Anniversary commemorations will be anchored by the theme “Pan Africanism and the African Renaissance”.

For a copy of the original speeches delivered at the establishment of the OAU in 1963 please click on link below:

http://summits.au.int/en/21stsummit/50th

Please visit the AU website for more details at:

http://summits.au.int/en/21stsummit/50th.

Extension of Deadline of SADC Lawyers’ Association (SADCLA) Call for Papers

The (SADCLA) deadline for the Call for Articles for The SADC Lawyer Magazine has been extended to 7th June 2013 to accommodate the requests for extensions.

Click here for the full call.

Burundi Bar Association Appoints New CEO

In October 2012 the BBA appointed Ms Marie Chantal Nahishakiye as their new CEO.

PALU extends its congratulations to Ms. Nahishakiye.

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Upcoming Events

Upcoming Ordinary Session of the African Court

The African Court will hold its 29th Ordinary session from 3rd-21st June 2013.

For more details you can visit the African Court website on http://www.african-court.org.

C5 UK to Hold Second Forum on Anti-Corruption

C5 will be holding a forum on Anti-corruption in Lagos Nigeria on 18th and 19th June 2013 at Four Points by Sheraton. The forum will consist of a 2-day conference featuring pre and post conference working groups. The smaller settings are specially designed to engage the participants in interactive discussions through case studies, scenarios, war stories and experience–sharing with the aim of providing in-depth information on how to tackle day-to-day challenges and implement best practices in to their daily work.

The forum will provide practical guidance on how to resolve complex anti-bribery compliance issues, including how to:
  • Implement a robust third party management programme for local agents, brokers, consultants and distributors;
  • Incorporate UK Bribery Act, US FCPA and local anti-bribery regulatory requirements into an effective region-speciļ¬c anti-corruption compliance programme;
  • Ensure that steps are put in place to roll out processes and procedures across your regional subsidiaries to minimise bribery risks;
  • Get the buy-in and partner with local regulators to strengthen your compliance efforts on the ground;
  • Promote corporate ethics to employees and third parties through training and overcome local constraints in maintaining a culture of compliance;
  • Mitigate individual and corporate liability subsequent to corruption and bribery enforcement actions in West Africa;
  • Tender and demonstrate robust anti-bribery processes in international operations;
  • Dos and don’ts for document collection, witness interviews and reporting when conducting an internal investigation.
For speaking opportunities and any programmatic questions please contact Ms. Yvette Lingom at y.lingom@c5-online.com.

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Advertisements and Vacancies

The EAC in collaboration with UNDP is looking for candidates to undertake a number of activities. The first requires candidates that will carry out the following:
  1. Study of Natural Resource Governance, Human Rights, Conflict and the Environment in East African Countries
  2. Training of National Parliamentary Committees, National Parliamentary Officers and the EAC Inter-Parliamentary Relations Liaison Committee on “Human Rights, Conflict and the Environment in Natural Resource Governance”.
Based on the findings of the above study, the consultant will undertake a training of EAC Inter-Parliamentary Relations Liaison Committee on Extractive Industries and National Parliamentary Committee Responsible for Human Rights, Gender, Youth, Peace and Security.

These interactive sessions will serve to strengthen the capacity of the Committees on one hand and improve liaison and harmonisation among national assemblies, on the other hand.  The workshop will involve select Committees of Parliaments at national level, and EALA members of the Committee on Agriculture, Tourism and Natural Resources.

For the full terms of reference click here.

The second requires consultants to work on re-packaging and fine-tuning the draft African Union Strategy on Reconstructing Public Service and Administration in Post-Conflict Countries. Among other tasks the consultants will review relevant literatures from the African Union, Africa Regional Economic Communities, the United Nations, and other relevant documents on Post-Conflict Reconstruction from other sources to gain excellent understanding of the issue.

For full terms of reference click here.

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