human rights

'Global jurist of the year': prestige award goes to Kenya’s Justice Mumbi Ngugi

One of the most prominent judges in Kenya has been given a major reward in recognition of her work in support of human rights. Judge Mumbi Ngugi, who sits on the anti-corruption and economic crimes division of the high court in Kenya, is also a world advocate for the rights of people with albinism at a time when, in certain parts of the world such as Kenya, people with albinism are targeted and sometimes even killed for ritual purposes.

Judge Mumbi Ngugi of Kenya's high court is a ‘role model’ for the law faculty of Northwestern University in the USA as well as for its students, ‘who aspire to be future Justice Ngugis’. That’s according to the Centre for International Human Rights (CIHR) at Northwestern University, the institution that is to award its annual prize to the Kenyan jurist.

Police officers cannot escape responsibility for rights abuse by citing ‘higher orders’ – Ugandan court

A judge of Uganda's high court has ruled that individual members of the police and other security forces may not rely on 'higher orders' or claims that they were waiting for orders 'from above', to justify human rights violations. Judge Margaret Mutonyi ordered significant damages as compensation to a number of applicants after she found police had abused their rights. In one of the two applications she dealt with, a number of people were unlawfully arrested and detained for participating in a legal protest against the raising of Uganda's presidential age limit.

Read judgment

It would be difficult to overstate the potential importance of a case just decided by the High Court in Uganda. More than a dozen applicants went to court against a number of police officers and the Attorney-General. Originally two separate matters, the applications were joined by the High Court judge presiding, Margaret Mutonyi, who said they raised similar issues.

Help secure African Court’s future: here’s your chance

One of the continent’s most precious and prized institutions, the African Court on Human and Peoples’ Rights, is under immense pressure. Its very existence as a human rights court for the continent is at stake – and now you can join in doing something about it. The court is asking for input on its next five-year plan and we urge you to take this plea for helpful ideas very seriously. Celebrate Africa Day by ensuring your voice is heard on the court’s future role!

Read the Court Registrar's letter

Complete the survey

All of the African Union’s members – well over 50 of them – agreed to the establishment of the African Court on Human and Peoples’ Rights. But very few of those countries have fully signed up by way of allowing individuals and NGOs to bring human rights-based cases for adjudication.

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