constitute an infringement of the Treaty, and that the Secretary General of the East African Community was required to have investigated this violation. The Court held that while it does not have jurisdiction over human rights violations per se, it may still consider cases if they fall under one of the provisions of Article 27(1), which sets out the jurisdiction of the Court, even if it also includes a human rights violation. One role of the Court is to interpret the Treaty (Article 27(1)), which includes “ respect for the rule of law ” (Article 6(d)) . The Court stated that the overriding consideration of the rule of law is that both the rulers and the governed are equally subject to the same law of the land. It was the role of the Ugandan judiciary to check the executive and protect the rule of law, and the intervention of the armed security agents thus violated the principle of the rule of law under the EAC Treaty. The Court also held that although the Secretary General of the EAC can investigate into human rights violations, he is not expected to conduct an investigation under Article 29(1) when he has no knowledge of the matter. The Court did stress, however, that once the Secretary General became aware of the situation as a result of the application being filed, he should have registered with the Ugandan government concern over the incompatibility of this with the EAC. Link to full judgment (PDF) Independent Medico Legal Unit v. Attorney General of Kenya Ruling on Jurisdiction: Independent Medico Legal Unit v. Attorney General of Kenya 29 June 2011, EACJ First Instance Division, Ref. No. 3 of 2010 Rule of Law (Article 6(d)), Time Limitation (Article 30(2)) Between 2006 and 2008, over 3,000 Kenyan residents of the Mt. Elgon District were forcibly disappeared, tortured and executed by Kenyan governmental authorities. The applicants alleged that the Kenyan government’s failure to take measures to prevent, investigate or punish those
OPEN SOCIETY JUSTICE INITIATIVE Human Rights Case Digests: East African Court of Justice (June 2013) | 4 | responsible violated several International Human Rights Conventions, the Kenyan Constitution as well as the EAC Treaty. The First Instance Division held that it had jurisdiction to hear the case. It established jurisdiction under its power to interpret the EAC Treaty, upholding Katabazi and referring to Article 6(d), which covers the rule of law, accountability and promotion and protection of human rights. It also held the application not to be time barred, despite the requirement in Article 30(2) of the Treaty that applications be filed within two months of becoming aware of the decision or action complained of, because the government’s failure to pr ovide a remedy was one part of a chain of violations which continued until the applicant initiated its application.
- Spring '16
- dickson chuma
- Law, Eac Case Law