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Inset: Sheriff Bojang Jnr of WDR interviewing ICC Prosecutor Fatou Bensouda

By Yanks Darboe

The prosecutor of the International Criminal Court, Mrs Fatou Bensouda, erred in her justification for remaining silent over human rights violations taking place in the country of her origin, The Gambia, under the dictatorship of brutal Dictator Yahya Jammeh.

Speaking with the West African Radio Journalist, Sheriff Bojang Jnr. the ICC’s Prosecutor tried to justify her failure to even issue a statement on the Gambia’s ongoing political violences, as due to the role of her court, which she emphasised is not a human rights court, but rather a court established for specific crimes, which she explained as: crimes against humanity; genocide and war crimes. However, the Madam Prosecutor failed to educate her audience about the courts, which ought to be classified as Human Rights Courts and what makes them different to her court, the ICC.

The Madam Prosecutor’s explanations are quite simply inaccurate, flawed and contrived, to simply justify her hypocrisy and indifference to the crimes of her former boss Dictator Yahya Jammeh, against her own people of the Gambia, including her former colleague at the Gambian Bar and opposition leader, Lawyer Ousainou Darboe. Otherwise, if the Madam Prosecutor truly believes and meant what she explained in the interview, then she does not understand the role of her court and was wrong to postulate that her critics confused her court, as being a human rights court.

You can access Madam Prosecutor’s interview from the link below:

To assist those unfamiliar with the notion of Human rights; human rights are quite simply what could be best described as the God given rights to every human being; such as the right to life, right to justice, rights to freedom from torture, false imprisonment, rights to family life, private life, religion, political opinion, etc. Issues relating to this matters in states, where such rights are valued, respected and protected are usually dealt with by the traditional courts of those states. In Europe, the highest appellate court for such cases is the ECHR and in US Supreme Court, as well as in many other countries. These are the courts, the ICC Madam Prosecutor, in this interview, wants us to believe are human rights courts, but not hers, the ICC. This is quite simply a buffoonery!

The traditional courts in most countries deal with such human rights violations, if those states prosecute or enforce their human rights laws appropriately under their laws, such as: rape, murder, false imprisonment, etc. But this is at most against individuals behaving irresponsibly or unfortunately.

However, where this violence or crimes of torture, unlawful killings, rape, false imprisonment becomes systematic and perpetrated by the state itself or the state blatantly failed to act appropriately in redressing such violations, then the appropriate court to bring an action against those perpetrators, including the head of state of that country, is at the ICC. Therefore how can such a court be described as not a human rights court?

Furthermore, the crimes against humanity under the Rome Statute, is quite simply crimes against human rights of individuals. This Madam Prosecutor is disingenuous in portraying such crimes, as some sort of specific crimes. Quite frankly there is nothing specific about them, they are simply crimes against human rights of citizens, which a particular state, signatory to the Rome Statue, is either an accomplish to the crime or failed to prosecute the perpetrators.

Secondly, the Madam Prosecutor further aimed to fool Gambians and the world that the crimes against humanity are only limited to unlawful killings. This could be inferred from her gravity argument. As she explained that she issued statement about Burundi, because the scale of deaths reached 400. In other words, she will issue statement on Gambia when the death toll passed 400.

This is not simply wrong but insane. In fact there was no such scale of deaths or gravity in Nigeria, when she issued her statement about that country or in Guinea. But she would want you to believe that there was a potential of such gravity in those countries.

However, that is not even the point the Madam Prosecutor is getting wrong here! The error on her part is interpreting Article 6 of the Rome Statue as limiting crimes against humanity to only unlawful killings. No, it does not only apply to killings alone! It includes torture, rape and arbitrary detentions. If those crimes are properly investigated, torture and arbitrary detentions alone warrants her office to file charges of crimes against humanity against Dictator Yahya Jammeh; not to talk of making a statement!!

Therefore, if the Prosecutor is indeed sincere with her words in this interview, then she should resign from her job due to incompetency or she should be sacked, for she is not doing her job properly!

But I doubt if that is the case here; I think this Madam Prosecutor is quite simply lying to justify her indifference to her boss’ crimes against her own people!!!

the attachments to this post:

Sheriff Bojang Jnr and ICC Prosecutor Fatou Bensouda

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