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alt CCJ TO ESTABLISH RELATIONSHIP WITH ICC

The President of the Community Court of Justice has advocated the creation of framework of cooperation between the Court and the International Criminal Court (ICC), based on axes to be determined by both Courts in order to strengthen synergy between them in the promotion of accountability, the fight against impunity and the defence of human rights.

In a paper presented on the Complementarity and Cooperation of Court in an Interconnected World Justice System, Justice Jerome Traoré said that such framework would facilitate the development of complementarity through the effective discharge of their individual mandates
He also proposed other areas of cooperation between the two Courts in the areas mainly in capacity building for their judges and officials as well as study and working visits for their officials


The President argued that even though the ECOWAS Court does not have criminal jurisdiction, there was the possibility that this could be added in the long or medium term for international crimes committed in the territory of Member States, adding that the ICC could contribute to this expansion.
Over the last five years (2011 to 2016), he said the ECOWAS Court delivered one hundred and ten judgments, fifty-six of them between 2015 and June 2016 with about 90% of the applications and judgments delivered by the Court related to human rights violations in Member States of the Community.

Justice Traoré identified the challenges facing the Court as the lack of financial autonomy, non-execution of judgements and the short tenure of the judges who are appointed for a four year non-renewable term contrary to the practice in most international Court, describing this as not conducive to stability and the jurisprudence of the Court.


Considering the increasing appeal of the Court to ECOWAS citizens for human rights cases, the President said the planned reduction in the number of the judges from seven to five as part of a restructuring proposed by a consultant will ‘paralyse’ the Court in the discharge its four-fold mandate as a Community Court, an Arbitration Tribunal, an ECOWAS Public Service Court and a Human Rights Court

The 18th January 2018 seminar brought together twenty-six Presidents or representatives of the Presidents of Supreme Court from around the world as well as a dozen regional Courts

In opening the seminar,  the President of the ICC, Mrs. Silvia Fernandez de Gurmendi explained that it was designed to Improve the effectiveness of the mandate and missions of the ICC; reflect on the challenges facing the courts and jointly seek ways and means to address them.
In this regard, she identified the common challenge faced by all jurisdictions is that of effective procedures and expressed the hope that the seminar would propose solutions which would make the proceedings before the national, regional and international courts more efficient.

Two papers were delivered of the issue of Complementarity by by Justice Robert Fremr and Cooperation, by Judge Chang-ho-Chung.

The delegation of the ECOWAS Court also attended the official opening ceremony of ICC 2018 Legal Year during which he was interviewed by the Court’s communication services in preparation for the 20th anniversary of the Rome Statute, the treaty that established the International Criminal Court (ICC) which was adopted at a diplomatic conference in Rome on 17 July 1998 and it entered into force on 1 July 2002.
The President of the Republic of Trinidad and Tobago, HE Antony T.A Carmona, was the  Guest of Honor at the opening ceremony.