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Enhancing criminal justice system reforms commended

Director of Public Prosecutions (DPP), Noordin Haji, applauds commitment made by the government to support Criminal Justice Systems in the country.

Speaking during the 16th Annual General Meeting and Conference of Africa Prosecutors’ Association (APA) that was officially opened by the President of Kenya, William Samoei Ruto, Haji expressed his enchantment to the President for his assurance   towards fostering the fair administration of justice across the Criminal Justice Sector, protecting human rights and upholding the rule of law.

“I wish to reiterate my gratitude to His Excellency the President of The Republic of Kenya and his Administration for the steadfast assurance to safeguarding  justice, by protecting the independence of all Criminal Justice Institutions”, expressed Haji.

Since assuming office, the President repeatedly affirmed that the rule of law, will be the cornerstone of his Administration.

The Theme of the meeting which is set to end on 2nd February, 2023 is ‘strengthening coordination and collaboration towards effective cross-border prosecution of Transnational Organized Crime (TOC).’

Kenya is hosting the Conference for the first time and in attendance are DPPs, Attorney Generals, Prosecutors and participants from both State and Non-State actors.

This session comes against the backdrop of the 4th International Association of Prosecutors African and Indian Ocean Region Conference, which was held from 16th to 20th May 2022, which hosted prosecution authorities from all over the world, to strengthen international cooperation in the fight against TOC.

Haji said that despite the Africa Prosecutors Association having a membership of 32, today’s conference expanded beyond to 43 countries, noting that this high level of attendance demonstrates that Kenya is at the forefront of the fight against TOC and a pioneer within the Criminal Justice Sector.

“This represents Africa’s commitment to tackling a global challenge with a global response through strengthened national, regional and international collaboration frameworks”, Haji stated.

The DPP said that the TOC include money laundering, cybercrimes that comprise of online child sexual exploitation and data theft, illicit financial flows, terrorism, violent extremism and environmental crimes that threaten our continental, regional and national security and undermine the rule of law.

“This Conference affords us with the opportunity to engage, deliberate, network and share experiences and best practices towards the development of efficient and effective strategies in tackling Transnational Organized Crimes,” Haji added.

He commended the need to develop enhanced formal and informal cooperation mechanisms, through the signing and upholding of MoU’s, harmonized legislation, policies and guidelines, whilst continuously sharing best practices, skills and expertise.

Towards this, Kenya is undertaking to establish its own Prosecution Training Institute (PTI),  that will be available for use by  the Continent.

Haji extended gratitude to the Development Partners that also graced the meeting, The Bureau of International Narcotics and Law Enforcement Affairs (INL), German Agency for International Cooperation (GIZ), the Attorney General’s Alliance, Africa (AGA-A), the European Union through the Anti-Money Laundering and Counter Financing of Terrorism in the Eastern, Southern, Central Africa and Yemen Program; and the United Nation of Drugs and Crime.

By Fatuma Said

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