March 26, 2019
The International Caravana of Jurists travelled to Colombia at the beginning of September 2018, to ascertain the impact that the peace process has had on the work of human rights lawyers and the dynamics of the conflict. A report of the mission is now available.
Since 2008, the Caravana has organised six international biannual delegations to Colombia in fact-finding missions to monitor the situation of human rights defenders, specifically on access to justice and respect for the rule of law.
The Sixth delegation of the International Caravana of Jurists visited Colombia shortly after the inauguration of President Iván Duque. At a time when the peace process hangs in the balance and violence escalating dramatically across Colombia, the delegation met with lawyers and judges working both within and outside state institutions and heard directly from victims and activists about the situations of risk which they face.
Since the signing of the Peace Agreement in November 2016, hundreds of human rights defenders have been killed and the UN has called for decisive action to stem the tide of violence enveloping many regions. Colombian’s official state Ombudsman has reported that a human rights defender is killed every three days.
le 26 mars, 2019
Le président du Mouvement pour la Renaissance du Cameroun sera devant les magistrats de la Cour d’appel du centre ce 26 mars pour la suite des procédures en Habeas Corpus.
Le bras de fer judiciaire se poursuit. Les dirigeants du MRC ne démordent pas. Ils sont déterminés à aller jusqu’au bout des différentes procédures pour que justice soit rendue à leur endroit.
L’on se souvient que le 07 mars dernier, le juge d’instance avait refusé d’accorder l’Habeas Corpus au candidat malheureux à la dernière élection présidentielle, Maurice Kamto, et ses partisants dont : le président de l’association ”Agir” et actuel conseiller spécial du Chef de l’Etat aux affaires économiques, Christian Penda Ekoka ; l’honorable Albert Dzongang ; l’ancien maire de Djombe-Penja, Paul Éric Kingue le président du MPCN ; le Professeur et trésorier national du MRC Alain Fogue, le cadre du MRC Célestin Djamen, et l’artiste Gaston Serval ABE dit Valsero.
La procédure en Habeas Corpus vise simplement la libération de ces différents acteurs politiques. Les militants du MRC, de même que leur président dit avoir rempli toutes les conditions précédemment demandées par la loi pour obtenir un Habeas Corpus.
Ce mardi le 26 mars 2019 va donc se tenir devant la Cour d’Appel du Centre à Yaoundé, l’audience consacrée à l’examen des requêtes d’appel contre les 07 premières étonnantes et incompréhensibles décisions de rejet d’Habeas Corpus du 07 mars 2019.
March 26, 2019
The High Court will on May 9 this year rule on whether it will grant bail to four police officers accused of killing Human Rights Lawyer Willie Kimani and two others.
This is even as the Director of Public Prosecutions (DPP) asked the court not to release the accused persons on bail.
Through State counsel Nicholas Mutuku, the court was told that there are only six witnesses remaining in the case to testify against the accused persons who include Fredrick Leliman, Leonard Maina, Stephen Chebulet and Sylvia Wanjiku Ngugi and police informer Peter Ngugi.
During the hearing of the bail application, the court was told that the remaining testimonies are that of protected witnesses who include two civilians and four police officers.
State counsel Mutuku submitted before the court that the same circumstances that earlier led to the accused being denied bail have not changed and they still exist.
“We have already taken testimonies from 38 witnesses and only have six more witnesses in order to conclude the case,” Mutuku told the court.
Through their lawyers, the accused persons asked the court to release them on bail arguing that they are not a flight risk and that they are civil servants earning half salary.
They argued that even though there are only six witnesses remaining in the case, it is not clear as to when the case will conclude.
March 25, 2019
Law professor made public statements blaming administration for problems facing China
A constitutional law professor who wrote a series of essays critical of China’s Communist party leadership has been stopped from teaching at the prestigious Tsinghua University in Beijing.
Since President Xi Jinping took office in 2012, Xu Zhangrun has written thousands of characters and given multiple speeches where he drew upon ancient Chinese philosophy, literature and political theory to criticise sharply decisions made by the country’s top leadership.
In a long essay published in July on the website of a liberal think-tank, Mr Xu touched upon some of the party’s most sensitive fears when he obliquely blamed Mr Xi for stoking tensions with the US, abandoning the reform efforts of Deng Xiaoping and repressing China’s intellectuals. Mr Xi’s rule has been marked by a crackdown on dissent.
Mr Xu was stripped of his positions and stopped from his teaching at Tsinghua, one of China’s leading universities and Mr Xi’s alma mater, according to two individuals who had confirmed the news with Tsinghua staff. As news of his situation spread on Chinese social media on Monday, a number of liberal media outlets reposted Mr Xu’s writing.
March 25, 2019
The Department of Justice (DOJ) on Monday continued its preliminary investigation into the murder of Quezon City prosecutor Rogelio Velasco last May.
During the hearing, the National Bureau of Investigation presented almost an hour’s worth of CCTV footage taken at the Quezon Memorial Circle and in Quezon City’s DOJ compound hours before Velasco was fatally shot on May 11, 2018.
Three policemen are accused of conspiring to murder the prosecutor. Two of them, Patrolman (formerly PO1) Jose Mercado and Police Staff Sergeant (formerly PO3) Arthur Lucy, have claimed they were in other places at the time of the shooting.
The third respondent, Police Senior Master Sergeant (formerly SPO2) Rodante Lalimarmo, said he was in the circle but was there to meet with a prospective car buyer.
Senior Assistant State Prosecutor Peter Ong ordered the policemen to submit manifestations in relation to the camera footage, which allegedly shows the three police officers, and directed the complainants to answer.
Velasco is one of at least 37 lawyers, prosecutors, and judges killed in the Philippines since the Duterte administration began, according to the count of the National Union of People’s Lawyers.
An international delegation of lawyers that briefly conducted an inquiry into some of the incidentssaid they found “patterns suggesting a connection between the killings and the actions of the Philippine National Police and the Armed Forces of the Philippines.”
March 25, 2019
The Muslim Lawyers’ Association has applied for a watching brief in contempt proceedings against lawyer Arunachalam Kasi, better known as Arun Kasi, who wrote two articles critical of a court judgement in February.
MLA president Zainul Rijal Abu Bakar said the committal proceedings brought by Attorney-General Tommy Thomas provided cause for concern, as the outcome of the case would have a wide ramification on the legal profession.
He said a lawyer must be allowed to act without fear or favour in conducting a case. “A lawyer cannot be above the law but he can express his views even it means supporting or criticising court judgments,” he said.
The Bar Council has also appointed lawyer Robert Lazar to observe the proceedings and to make submissions if invited by the court.
The Federal Court will hear the charge against Arun on March 28
Arun Kasi had written two articles about an affidavit of Court of Appeal Judge, Abdul Hamid Abu Backer which described alleged judicial misconduct.
The articles, published at the Aliran website, were under the headlines “How a dissenting judgment sparked a major judicial crisis” on Feb 16 and “Tommy Thomas must look into arbitration centre that sparked judicial crisis” on Feb 22.