Solving Conflicts Between Rwanda and Uganda: What Legal and Institutional Remedies?

Note on how to cite this journal:

Author, Date of the post, WMO Conflict Insight, Title of the post,  ISSN: 2628-6998, https://worldmediation.org/conflict-insight 

The author is reachable at reachsafari@gmail.com. He works at the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR). However, views expressed herein are not a reflection of the official position, past, present or future, of the United Nations or the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees.

1. INTRODUCTION: WHY THIS PAPER?

There has been a conflict between the Republic of Rwanda (hereinafter Rwanda) and The Republic of Uganda (hereinafter Uganda) for more than two years over security allegations. Mediation efforts have not yielded lasting outcomes. This paper describes the conflict, outlines mediation efforts, reflects on African legal and institutional remedies. Finally, the paper outlines the best-case scenario, the most likely scenario, and the worst-case scenario.

2) CONFLICT: ACTORS AND FACTORS

Rwanda is one of the smallest countries: 26,338 square kilometres, with the highest population density, 525 per square kilometre, and home to 12,000,000[1]. Rwanda exports and imports through the Northern Corridor (Uganda to Kenya’s Indian Ocean port of Mombasa)[2], located in 1,800km. Alternatively, Rwanda uses the Central Corridor via Tanzania (1,400 km long from Rwanda). Uganda is a neighbour to Kenya in the west, South Sudan in the north, the west of the DRC, and Rwanda and Tanzania in the South. Home to around 45,741,007 people[3], its population density is 229 per square kilometre. While Uganda is landlocked, it enjoys a geographical location that can influence the flow of commodities in and from Rwanda. Rwanda and Uganda are members of the East African Community (EAC).

Recently, the UN’s group of experts[4] reported that Uganda supports the Platform Five (P5), an umbrella organisation that seeks to overthrow the ruling Rwanda Patriotic Front (RPF)[5] headed by Kayumba Nyamwasa[6]. P5 brings together anti-Rwanda groups aimed at destabilising the government in Kigali[7], such as including the Rwanda National Congress[8] and FDLR allied and other movements under the P5 (Amahoro People’s Congress (Amahoro-PC), the People’s Defence Pact-Imanzi (PDP-Imanzi), the Forces Démocratiques Unifiées-Inkingi (FDU Inkingi), and the Social Party-Imberakuri (PS Imberakuri)[9]. The P5 carried out incursions in  July and December 2018) and April 2019 and inflicted human and economic losses to Rwanda. Finally, Uganda has been reportedly abducting, illegally detaining, subjecting Rwandans on its territory to torture and other forms of inhuman and degrading treatment[10]. Rwanda also accused Uganda of sabotaging the flow of trade[11]. Uganda has, in its turn, accused Rwanda of attempts to infiltrate its security apparatus and killing its citizens[12], as well as closing the Katuna/Gatuna border. The conflict has caused financial losses on both sides and counterproductive to EAC, on a regional body that seeks to widen and deepen economic, political, social, and cultural integration to advance the standard of living for the people of East Africa through increased competitiveness, value-added production, trade, and investments[13]. Below, the paper outlines mediation efforts and outcomes.

  • THE ATTEMPTS: WHAT HAVE MEDIATORS ACHIEVED?

Under the auspices of the ICGLR – International Conference on the Great Lakes Region, the presidents of Angola, João Manuel Gonçalves Lourenço (hereinafter Lourenço) and the Democratic Republic of Congo – DRC, Félix Antoine Tshisekedi Tshilombo (hereinafter Tshisekedi) have facilitated the process in four rounds:

The first round took place in Luanda. Kagame and Museveni met in Luanda, with the facilitation of  Lourenço, Tshisekedi, and Denis Sassou Nguesso (Congo – Brazza)[14]. At the end of the summit, Kagame and Museveni signed an MoU to solve these challenges. To ensure the implementation, Uganda and Rwanda committed to activating an Ad Hoc Commission for the MoU operation and keeping facilitators informed of developments[15]. In a press release, the UN Secretary-General saluted the efforts, urging neighbours to restore friendly ties and co-operation for regional stability[16].

The second round took place in Kigali. Building on the Luanda MoU, Kigali voiced her concerns about cases involving Rwandans, whom it says have been illegally detained or tortured on Ugandan soil. The Minister also voiced Uganda of hosting and supporting terror groups aimed at destabilising the government in Kigali[17]. Regarding the allegations related to supporting the anti- Rwanda forces, Minister Kutesa (Uganda’s MFA) commented that his country benefits nothing in destabilising Rwanda, just like Rwanda benefits nothing in destabilising Uganda[18]. At the end of the day,  Manuel Domingos Augusto, the Angolan MFA in attendance, voiced his optimism, saying it testifies how African countries can work together to resolve their issues.

The third round took place in Kampala,  after three postponements. Uganda and Rwanda MFAs briefing the media after the meeting, they were glad that the talks were cordial. On a positive note, both parties noted progress in respect of the drafting of the extradition treaty. On the other hand, there is a standoff. Rwanda reiterated its threefold interests: anti-Rwanda armed groups operating in Uganda, illegal arrest and arbitrary detention of Rwandans, and hostile propaganda. Rwanda highlighted that more than 1000 the military intelligence arrested Rwandans in Uganda since January 2019. Minister Olivier highlighted a need for good faith and goodwill from Uganda to implement the Luanda MoU and the Kigali Communiqué. On Uganda’s side, Minister Kuteesa highlighted two issues: attempts for infiltration of security of organs by Rwanda and border closure. He also highlighted that Uganda has no interest in destabilising neighbouring countries’ security[19]. Minister Kuteesa suggested a joint verification mechanism, to which Rwanda replied that no amount of commissions would replace the need for goodwill and good faith. After failing to achieve a substantive agreement on raised issues, both parties agreed they would brief their principals and seek guidance on the way forward.

Finally, the Gatuna / Katuna Summit convened, with the facilitation of Lourenço and Tshisekedi. The people of Rwanda and Uganda were respectively awaiting changes in cross border movements. At the end of the Summit, MFAs bilaterally signed an Extradition Treaty. It is a positive development; any suspected criminal in either country would not be deported but extradited from then on.  However, parties hit a stalemate; they did not address other substantive matters. After the summit, the ball was put solely back on the Ugandan side. Uganda had to first deal with the dissidents and rebel forces on its territory fighting Rwanda and ensuring respect for international human rights and international humanitarian laws. Facilitators asked Uganda to finish the homework within a one-month deadline, report to the Adhoc commission, after which the state leaders would meet[20].

Fourteen months have elapsed since the Gatuna Summit, yet nothing has happened. There may be the COVID-19 contributed. Neither effort nor follow up action has been publicly recorded, and their relationships have not improved. One conflict analyst has observed that these efforts have failed due to a lack of goodwill and good faith from Uganda. The mediation did not bear fruits because they lack appropriate carrots and sticks to persuade parties to negotiate in good faith and implement their commitments[21]. The paper, cognisant of the conflict resolution efforts, asks whether African legal and institutional frameworks can contribute to the peaceful co-existence between Rwanda and Uganda? It is the preoccupation of the following section.

  • THE PROPOSAL: AFRICAN SOLUTIONS TO AFRICAN PROBLEMS?

From the stories outlined, there are three issues: (1) the co-operation of foreign states with combatants to destabilise the security of a sovereign state, (2) arbitrary arrest, illegal detention and inhuman treatment, and  (3) impediment of trade to regional bodies. Below, the paper attempts to review institutional and legal frameworks in Africa that may be relevant in the situation at hand: the Bilateral Arrangements, East African Community, the ICGLR – International Conference on the Great Lakes Region and the African Union (AU).

  1. Bilateral Talks: Uganda and Rwanda

Rwanda and Uganda are independent and sovereign states. The United Nations Charter (article 2, para 1)[22] underscores a principle of the sovereign equality of all the United Nations members. As such, Rwanda and Uganda are legitimate state actors capable of entering into mutually binding agreements.  Rwanda and Uganda could have used a pacific settlement of disputes through their embassies or heads of states. The UN Charter[23] urges members to seek a solution utilising negotiation, mediation, enquiry, conciliation, judicial settlement, arbitration, resort to regional agencies/arrangements/other peaceful means of their own choice. The belligerents had an option to activate one of the listed approaches. They, however, missed this opportunity. Luckily, there is a remaining option of resorting to regional agencies, which the paper outlines below.

  1. The East African Community and its Organs: An Institutional and Legal Analysis

The UN Charter does not preclude regional arrangements for international peace and security if they align with the United Nations purposes and principles[24]. As such, UN members entering such arrangements shall settle their local disputes in a pacific manner through such regional arrangements before referring them to the Security Council[25]. In the context at hand, the East African Community (EAC) could have played a role. On 30 November 1999, member states signed the Treaty for the Establishment of the East African Community, and it entered into force on 7 July 2000, amended on 14 December 2006 and on 20 August 2007[26]. Its member states are Burundi, Kenya, Rwanda, Uganda, the United Republic of Tanzania, and South Sudan.

EAC officially seeks to expand economic, political, social, and cultural integration to advance the standard of living for the people through increased competitiveness, value-added production, trade, and investments[27]. The Treaty commits to ensuring peace, security, stability within, and good neighbourliness among the Partner States[28]. The Treaty also articulates principles on which the EAC member states must uphold. The principles include peaceful co-existence and good neighbourliness[29] , and peaceful settlement of disputes[30]. From these provisions, Uganda and Rwanda have a platform that they could have used to settle the ongoing conflict.

Besides, the Treaty provides for the East African Court of Justice[31]. The Legal and Institutional framework governing the East African Court of Justice operations is primarily drawn from the Treaty for the Establishment of the East African Community. It is the Treaty that establishes the court as one of its organs (Article 9); provides for its structures/ composition (article 24); mandate (article 23 and 27). And other incidental issues thereto. Under Article 23(2) and (3) of the Treaty, the EACJ shall consist of the first instance division and an Appellate division. The first instance division is competent to hear and determine, at first instance, any matter before the court under the Treaty, subject to appeal. The EAC Treaty imposes some obligations upon the member states ranging from trade liberalisation, financial co-operation, cooperation in transport and communication, energy, industrial development, science and technology through health and environmental matters[32] , which are bound to bring to the fore much litigation before the court.

Like other courts, the EACJ requires parties to meet the locus standi, the capacity to bring actions or appear in court. The Treaty provides that cases can only be instituted at the EACJ in the following manner: 16 Article 28 17 Article 29 18 Article 30 19 Article 34 20 Article 37 21 Article 37 and Rule 17 (1) 22 Rule 17 (2) 23 Rule 17 (3) 24 Rule 17 (4)[33]. A Partner State may seize the court if it considers that another Partner State/organ/institution of the Community has not fulfilled an obligation or has infringed a provision of the Treaty. A State may also seek the court to determine the legality of an Act/ regulation/ directive decision/ action on the ground that it is ultra vires or unlawful or infringes the provisions of the Treaty[34].

It is moreover worth a reflection to discuss the exhaustion of remedies. Under International law, the doctrine of exhaustion of local remedies states that “a State must have the opportunity to redress a supposed wrong within the framework of its domestic legal system before the international responsibility can be called into question at [the] international level. Unlike the African Court of Human and People’s Rights, there is no requirement that applications exhaust domestic remedies as a condition before bringing an application to the court[35], in line with the principle of a “people-centred and market-driven co-operation” as enshrined in Article 7(1) of the EAC – Treaty[36].

  1. The ICGLR: An Institutional and Legal Analysis

The creation of the International Conference on the Great Lakes Region (ICGLR) goes back to the year 2000 when the United Nations Security Council (UNSC) passed resolutions 1291 and 1304, calling for an international conference on security peace, democracy and development in the Great Lakes region[37]. The recognition of ICGLR as a mechanism for combating impunity and promoting justice and human rights requires a critical reflection and understanding of the mechanism’s past, present, and future. In the quest to transform the region into a cosmos of peace, security and sustainable human development, in 2000, the UN Security Council called for an International Conference on peace, security, democracy and development in the Great Lakes Region (see resolutions 1291 and 1304). In November 2004, the eleven Heads of State and Government of the member states unanimously adopted the Dar-es-Salaam Declaration on Peace, Security and Development in the Great Lakes region in Dar es Salaam, Tanzania. They convened once again in Nairobi in 2006 to sign the Pact on Security, Stability and Development in the Great Lakes Region. Later the Secretariat of the ICGLR was established in Bujumbura, Burundi.

Among the relevant protocols, one can cite the protocol of non-aggression and mutual defence in the region, on democracy and good governance, protocol on judicial co-operation, and the Protocol for the Preventionpreventing and punishment ofpunishing the crime of genocide, war crimes and Crimescrimes against Humanityhumanity and all forms of discrimination, as well as the protocol on the Prevention and Punishment of Sexual Violence Against Women and Children (SGBV). For example, the implementation of the Protocol on Non-aggression and Mutual Defence results from the commitment of Member states to eradicate the hostile forces in the region, minimise interstate conflict by forging a common destiny around security issues. The main achievements here have been the neutralisation of FDLR and M23 that were the main actors in eastern DRC and the neighbouring countries.

In the same vein, the Protocol on Judicial Cooperation is worth comment. A meeting of the Ministers of Justice of the ICGLR Member States convened in Livingstone, Zambia, in August 2015 and made firm commitments to accelerate the domestication of the Protocols, including the one on Judicial Cooperation. On the one hand, the meeting pledged to ensure the domestication of four priority Protocols in 2015 and 2016, namely the Protocol for Non-Aggression and Mutual Defence, the Protocol on Judicial Cooperation, and the Protocol on the Prevention and Eradication of Sexual Violence against Women and Children. On the other hand, they committed to complete the domestication of the other six remaining Protocols by 2018. The Network for Judicial Cooperation of the Central Judicial Authorities and Prosecutors of the Great Lakes Region of Africa, usually referred to as “the Great Lakes Judicial Cooperation Network” or “GLJC Network”, was set up during a meeting organised by ICGLR and the Office of the Special Envoy of the Secretary-General of the UN in the Great Lakes Region on 10th and 11th August 2016 in Nairobi, Kenya. It seeks to strengthen central judicial authorities, prosecutors and other actors in the region to combat all forms of cross-border crime and impunity. It is supposed to facilitate investigations within member countries, the extradition of suspects and arrested persons and letters rogatory when investigations are held in a country (see  Article 2 of the Statute). However, the ICGLR failed in making negotiators committed to the mutually agreed upon duties and responsibilities.

  1. The African Union: An Institutional and Legal Analysis

The African Union has the potential to attend to African problems.  Besides political mediation, the African Charter on Human and People’s Rights (hereinafter called the African Charter) can help. It assumed its place in history in 1981. Before adopting its constitutive act of the African Union[38], human rights were not recognised officially as a preoccupation objective of the African Union (AU).[39] The African Charter on Human and People’s Rights (African Charter) has reflected efforts by the African continent to grabble with concerns over human rights. The African Charter envisages scrutiny by treaty organs over state conduct that violates human rights. The primary organs for monitoring and protecting human rights under this Charter were the African Commission on Human and People’s Rights (Commission), a quasi-judicial body that monitors the Charter and African Court of Human and Human Rights implementation in 2004.[40] With its protocol establishing the African court on human and people’s rights (African Court), the African Charter is a meaningful contribution to the human rights domain and no doubt that there is a demand for respect for the promotion and protection of human rights the continent. However, with the realisation of the fact that there is a need for a robust apparatus for protecting and promoting human rights, unlike African Commission for human and people’s rights (African Commission), whose recommendations were never binding, the African heads of state signed the protocol to establish the African Court[41].

During their functions, the Commission and the Court scrutinise incidents and situations taking place within the domestic legal order of state members to the Charter. The commission has even admitted and affirmed the principle that human rights are not the preserve of the domestic jurisdiction of States.[42] However, the African Charter recognises that the commission may not receive communications related to claims that have not been brought first before organs of the defending state. It is found in article 56 (5) of the African Charter. In the human rights domain today, individual complaints procedures are the most successful ways of human rights[43].

Similarly to other international and regional human rights mechanisms, the African continental human rights bodies generally require complainants[44] to exhaust domestic remedies before submitting a claim.[45] It means that a person must attempt to use the available national legal protections to seek accountability or reparation for the violation, appealing as necessary until the claim can be pursued no further at the national level. If a person does not receive an adequate remedy from a national body, then he or she may submit a complaint against the state for consideration by a supranational human rights body. The rationale of the local remedies rule embodied in article 56 (5) of the African Charter is to permit a State to deal with a claim brought against it using the judicial and administrative venue within its domestic legal order before it is summoned by an international body to answer for the claim.[46] In the World Organization against Torture and Others v Zaire case, the African Commission stated the raison d’être of the rule: “the requirement of exhaustion of local remedies is based on the principle that a government should be made aware of human rights violation to have the opportunity to address such violations before being called before an international body.”[47]

Although complaints submitted to the African Commission on Human and Peoples’ Rights or the African Court on Human Peoples’ Rights must meet all of the admissibility requirements set out in Article 56 of the African Charter, the African Commission has stated that exhaustion of domestic remedies is one of the most critical conditions for admissibility.[48] More significantly, the commission has had to reflect upon the wording “if any” in article 56 (5) of the Charter, that remedies must be in existence or available within the domestic legal order.

Furthermore, the commission emphasised that the remedies must be not only available but also practical.[49] From what is stated above, the rule of exhaustion of local remedies is not considered if those remedies are not available or insufficient. Nevertheless, are these the only exceptions to the rule? Some authors argue that there must be a particular link between the injured person and the defending state in all international legal systems where the exhaustion of local remedies is required. That link may be the voluntary physical presence or residence of the person in the country concerned, property of a particular object located in that country or contractual relationship with that particular state.[50] Logically, the rule of exhaustion of local remedies should not apply to such situations. It will not be justice to oblige a victim in Rwanda to go and exercise local remedies in Uganda, for example, while he has no other link with that country unless the victim has voluntarily submitted himself under the jurisdiction of Ugandan courts. In this case, the paper argues that there are challenges for Rwandans aggrieved in Uganda to seize the African Court of Human and People’s right.

  • CONCLUSION: WHAT POSSIBLE REMEDIES?

The article has delineated the causes of conflict between Rwanda and Uganda. It has also explored dynamics in the four rounds of negotiation held so far. In a final analysis, the success of the negotiation depends on Uganda’s good faith and goodwill. In this context, the paper proposes three possible actions:

5.1. Best Case Scenario: ICGLR

Rwanda and Uganda will respectively realise the imperatives of peaceful co-existence. Uganda will work on the tasks that facilitators assigned and convince the Joint Commission and facilitators. It would lead to the normalisation of the relationships. However, this largely depends on Uganda’s good faith.

5.2. Most Likely Case Scenario: East African Community

I do not foresee Rwanda seeking a legal redress venue. The East African Community will realise that the unhealthy relationships between member states are counterproductive to the mission of the regional body. The fellow presidents will urge Kagame and Museveni to cooperate and end the diatribe and malicious activities.

5.3. Worst Case Scenario: No Action, Further Hostilities

In the worst-case scenario, each party will stick to guns. The situation will remain as it is.  In the context of the state’s raison d’être, each country may continue to mind its businesses, multiply intelligence and counterintelligence, bilateral relations in the region and abroad to resulting in further deterioration of relationships between Uganda and Rwanda. However, I do not foresee an open recourse to military action.

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[1] Worldometer, “Rwanda Population (2021),” 2021, https://www.worldometers.info/world-population/rwanda-population/.

[2] Voice of America, “Rwanda Accuses Uganda of Supporting Rebels,” March 5, 2019, https://www.voanews.com/africa/rwanda-accuses-uganda-supporting-rebels.

[3]Worldometer, “Uganda Population,” 2021, https://www.worldometers.info/world-population/uganda-population/.

[4] United Nations, “Letter S/2018/1133 – E – S/2018/1133 Dated 18 December 2018 from the Group of Experts on the Democratic Republic of the Congo Addressed to the President of the Security Council,” December 18, 2018, https://www.undocs.org/S/2018/1133.

[5] Paul Nantulya, “Escalating Tensions between Uganda and Rwanda Raise Fear of War,” July 3, 2019, https://africacenter.org/spotlight/escalating-tensions-between-uganda-and-rwanda-raise-fear-of-war/.

[6] Faustin Kayumba Nyamwasa was in Ugandan army as many of his compatriots. He was later the Rwandan Army Chief of Staff and Ambassador of Rwanda to India. The Military High Court (MHC) sentenced him to 24 years in prison for forming a terrorist group, threatening state security, undermining public order, promoting ethnic divisions, and insulting the person of the President of the Republic. His sentence includes four years for deserting the Army. He was also dismissed with disgrace from the Rwanda Defence Forces.

[7] Eugene Uwimana, “Rwanda, Uganda Hold Peace Talks to Defuse Tensions,” Voice of America, September 17, 2019, https://www.voanews.com/africa/rwanda-uganda-hold-peace-talks-defuse-tensions.

[8] This was formed by Faustin Kayumba Nyamwasa. He was in Ugandan army as many of his compatriots. He was later the Rwandan Army Chief of Staff and Ambassador of Rwanda to India. The Military High Court (MHC) sentenced him to 24 years in prison for forming a terrorist group, threatening state security, undermining public order, promoting ethnic divisions, and insulting the person of the President of the Republic. His sentence includes four years for deserting the Army. He was also dismissed with disgrace from the Rwanda Defence Forces.

[9] United Nations, “Midterm Report of the Group of Experts on the Democratic Republic of the Congo (S/2018/1133)” (Washington, D.C: United Nations, 2018), https://www.undocs.org/S/2018/1133.

[10]Ministry of Foreign Affairs – Rwanda, “The First Meeting of the Ad-Hoc Commission on the Implementation of the Luanda MoU between Rwanda and Uganda Convenes in Kigali,” August 21, 2019, https://www.minaffet.gov.rw/updates/news-details/communique-the-first-meeting-of-the-ad-hoc-commission-on-the-implementation-of-the-luanda-mou-between-rwanda-and-uganda.

[11] Sophie Neiman, “The Dangers of Deteriorating Relations Between Rwanda and Uganda,” World Politics Review, October 17, 2019, https://www.worldpoliticsreview.com/articles/28272/the-dangers-of-deteriorating-relations-between-rwanda-and-uganda.

[12] Nantulya, “Escalating Tensions between Uganda and Rwanda Raise Fear of War.”

[13] East African Community, “Overview of EAC,” 2021, https://www.eac.int/overview-of-eac.

[14] Uwimana, “Rwanda, Uganda Hold Peace Talks to Defuse Tensions.”

[15] Voice of America, “Uganda, Rwanda Leaders Sign Pact Aimed at Ending Standoff,” August 21, 2019, https://www.voanews.com/africa/uganda-rwanda-leaders-sign-pact-aimed-ending-standoff.

[16]United Nations, “Secretary-General Welcomes Rwanda-Uganda Memorandum of Understanding, Urging Neighbours to Restore Friendly Ties Cooperation for Regional Stability,” August 23, 2019, https://www.un.org/press/en/2019/sgsm19708.doc.htm.

[17] Uwimana, “Rwanda, Uganda Hold Peace Talks to Defuse Tensions.”

[18] Uwimana.

[19] Kigali Today, Why Did Kampala Talks Fail? Kuteesa and Nduhungirehe Explain, 2019, https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Ny4ZhXtUoSU.

[20] The Chronicles, “Disappointment: Rwanda-Uganda Border Not Opening Today, May Be Opened In 45 Days or Even Never,” February 21, 2020, https://www.chronicles.rw/2020/02/21/disappointment-rwanda-uganda-border-not-opening-today-may-be-opened-in-45-days-or-even-never/.

[21] Jean Paul Safari, “Mending A Broken Friendship: Can Mediation Help End Enmity between Rwanda and Uganda?,” WMO Conflict Insight, 2021, https://worldmediation.org/mending-a-broken-friendship-can-mediation-help-end-enmity-between-rwanda-and-uganda/.

[22] United Nations, “Charter of the United Nations and Statute of the International Court of Justice” (United Nations, 1945), https://treaties.un.org/doc/publication/ctc/uncharter.pdf.

[23] United Nations. Article 33, para 1

[24] United Nations. Article, para 1

[25] United Nations. Article, para 2

[26] East African Community, “The Treaty for the Establishment of the East African Community,” 1999, https://www.eala.org/uploads/The_Treaty_for_the_Establishment_of_the_East_Africa_Community_2006_1999.pdf.

[27] East African Community. Article 5, para 1.

[28] East African Community. Article 5, para 1 (f).

[29] East African Community. Article 6, para 1 (b).

[30] East African Community. Article 6, para 1 (c).

[31] East African Community. Article 9 (1) (e).

[32] East African Community. Chapter 2

[33] See AG of Rwanda v Plaxeda Rugumba (2012), para 39

[34] East African Community, “The Treaty for the Establishment of the East African Community.” Article 28.

[35] AG of Rwanda v Plaxeda Rugumba (2012)

[36] The East African Law Society v AG of Kenya

[37] ICGLR, “ICGLR Overview,” 2018, http://www.icglr.org/index.php/en/background.

[38] Article 5(h) of the Constitutive Act of the African Union

[39] Constitutive Act of the African Union, Article 3 entered into force on 26th May 2001

[40] International Freedom of Expression Exchange, “Africa Ratifies Human Rights Court” in

< http://www.ifex.org/en/content/view/full/56594/?PHPSESSID=37b8f676 >, visited February, 2020.

[41] George Makundi Wachira, African Court on Human and People’s Right. Ten years on and still no justice. http://www.unchr.org/refworld.pdfd/48e4763c2.pdf.last accessed in February 2020

[42] See for example, Communication 137/94, International Pen and Others (on behalf of Saro Wiwa) v Nigeria, Twelfth Annual Report, para. 116.

[43] Walter Kalin and Jorg Kunzli, ‘the law of international human rights protection” Oxford University press 2009, p., 233

[44]The term “complainant” is used throughout this guide to refer to the alleged victim(s) or their representatives submitting the allegations to the international body. However, committees often refer to victims in the cases as “author”, “petitioner”, “victim”, or “applicant”. For purposes of this guide, “complainant” covers all of these terms.

[45]AfCHPR, Peter Joseph Chacha v. Tanzania, App. No. 003/2012, Judgment of 28 March 2014, para. 142, available at http://www.african-court.org/en/images/Cases/Judgment/Ruling_Appl_003_2012.pdf (stating that exhaustion of domestic remedies “is not a matter of choice. It is a legal requirement in international law”).

[46] See in this regard Ambatielos Arbitration (Greece/ Great Britain), 1956, 12 R/AA 83, (ICJ).

[47] Communications 25/89, 47/90, 56/91 & 100/93, World Organization against Torture and Others v Zaire (Zaire mass violations case), Ninth Annual Report, para. 36

[48] ACommHPR, Sir Dawda K. Jawara v. Gambia, para. 30.

[49] See for example Comm. Nos. 147/95, 149/96 of the African Commission, Jawara v. The Gambia, para. 31.

[50] C.F. AMERASINGHE, Local Remedies in International Law, Cambridge, Cambridge University Press, 2004, p. 169; T. MERON, The Incidence of the Rule of Exhaustion of Local Remedies, BYBIL, vol. 35 (1959), p. 94.

 

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