Attorney General Paul Kihara has lauded the ongoing training on good governance and the rule of law under the theme ‘Enhancing the ability of the Bench and the Bar in East Africa aimed at promoting and expanding the East African civic space through the East African Court of Justice (EACJ) architecture’.
He said this training would support the EACJ as a forum for promoting civic space and empowering judicial professionals to act as agents of good governance and rule of law agenda in the East African Community (EAC).
“The EACJ has played a very important role in the promotion of civic space as part of the maintenance of good governance and the rule of law that are the bedrock of regional integration,” said Kihara.
Speaking during the official opening of the training of Judges on Good Governance and the Rule of Law in EAC at the Nairobi hotel, Kihara said the EACJ has in the recent past witnessed a growth in its activities.
He noted that the report presented by the court to the 40th Meeting of the EAC Council of Ministers on 25th February, 2021 highlighted that a total of sixty-four matters were handled by the Court in the year 2020.
“This is commendable, considering the disruptions occasioned by the Covid-19 pandemic,” he said.
He added that the report presented to the Council indicated that once the Court has delivered a judgement on a particular matter, there were no mechanisms to know of the implementation of the decision unless the beneficiary of the decision returned to Court on non – implementation of its decision.
In his remarks, the Judge President of the EACJ Justice Nestor Kayobera said the key fundamental principles governing the achievement of the objectives of the community could not have come at a better time as this.
“As we embark on our judicial journey at EACJ, we will ensure there is proper interpretation and application of the treaty for the establishment of East Africa Community,” said Kayobera.
In his remarks, the Director of the Centre of Public Interest Litigation Mr Francis Gimara said the EACJ has construed its jurisdiction broadly in terms of the scope on the subject-matter of regional integration.
“The lack of a specific human rights jurisdiction has not disempowered the Court in addressing allegations of infringements of the Treaty as evidenced from many decisions which we shall revisit in the course of this training,” he explained.
By Hamdi Mohamud