Public Communications Office
Date : 9th December, 2015
Stakeholders with the East African Court of Justice (EACJ) held a one day workshop on the relationship of the Court and the National Courts of the Partner States in a Nairobi hotel. It was organized by the Raoul Wallenberg Institute of Human Rights and Humanitarian Law and the East African Court of Justice. The workshop was financed by Swedish Development Cooperation.
The cabinet secretary Mrs. Phyllis Kandie opened the workshop with an assurance that the government was committed to ensure that the EAC Integration was on course. She challenged the EACJ to step up awareness campaigns on the good working relationship between the EACJ and the National courts.
In a speech read on her behalf by the Integration secretary within the State Department of East African Affairs, Mr. Barack Ndegwa, the Cabinet secretary said the treaty establishing the East African Community in Article 33clearly outlines the relationship between National Courts and the East African Court of Justice and hence the need to create awareness on the working relations and forge a way of working together.
“As you meet today to deliberate on the role of the EACJ in the integration Agenda, O would like to emphasize Kenya’s commitment in supporting the East African Court of Justice. As Kenyans we are a very litigious society, very much concerned with our rights and frequently approach courts for adjudication of our matters, ‘’ she said.
EACJ President Dr. Emmanuel Ugirashebuja lamented that his organization lacks a strong legal and dispute resolution mechanism, which threatens its survival in promoting regional integration. He added that because of the importance of the Law, regional integration requires good cooperation between partners in the rule of law chain.
‘’ It is law that provides the concrete rights and benefits of regional integration to businesses and individuals. It is law that allows for the free efficient movement within the internal market’’, he stressed.
Presenters during the workshop included Justice Aron Ringera of the EACJ Appelate court, Arusha, and Head of the Raoul Wallenberg Institute of Human Rights Kenya office, Mr. Josh Ounsted, among others. It was attended by the Department’s Legal Officer, Ms. Winnie Cheserem.