Strengthening Justice And Accountability in Nigeria Through Capacity Building

Nigeria has been suffering from violent conflict between Boko Haram and the government forces for many years (Wayamo’s background report on accountability efforts for international crimes in Nigeria). In 2010, the International Criminal Court (ICC) commenced a preliminary examination into the situation in Nigeria, looking at allegations of crimes against humanity and war crimes committed by both Boko Haram and the Nigerian security forces. Its preliminary examination, which concluded in 2020, focused on the existence and genuineness of Nigerian national proceedings relating to these crimes. This is in line with the principle of complementarity, whereby the Court will only investigate serious crimes or prosecute an individual where the state concerned is unwilling or unable to do so itself. The next step could be for the ICC Prosecutor to request authorisation from the Pretrial Chamber to open a formal investigation into the situation in Nigeria. 

Project Overview
Strengthening Justice And Accountability In Nigeria Through Capacity Building For Civil And Military Prosecutors In The Investigation And Prosecution Of International And Transnational Crimes

This current Wayamo project which began in December 2016 aims to strengthen justice and accountability in Nigeria, and enhance domestic capacity to investigate and prosecute core international crimes and transnational organised crimes. The training seeks to enable Nigerian prosecutors to carry out the prosecution of complex international crimes in a genuine manner. If Nigeria can investigate and/or prosecute the crimes allegedly committed by Boko Haram and the Nigerian security forces domestically, it will be acting in accordance with its international obligations under the Rome Statute and potentially obviate the need for ICC intervention. Domestic authorities are often best placed to prosecute nationals and deliver accountability at home, where the victims and survivors of atrocities can see justice done.

Objectives

Build the capacity of Nigerian prosecutors from the Complex Casework Group

To hold a series of capacity-building training sessions for Nigerian civilian prosecutors, to equip them to address international and terrorism-related crimes under Nigerian criminal law, including crimes that may potentially fall under the jurisdiction of the ICC. Throughout the project, Wayamo's objectives broadened to include the creation of an electronic case-file database to serve as a repository for terrorism files and their corresponding judgements.

BUILD THE CAPACITY OF NIGERIAN MILITARY INVESTIGATORS AND PROSECUTORS

To enhance the capacity of military authorities to implement genuine accountability efforts to address alleged human rights violations committed by the armed forces and to enhance the investigative skills of the members of the Joint Investigation Centre (JIC) in Maiduguri. Throughout the project, Wayamo's objectives broadened to include training the 22 military officers whose nomination to the Serious Crimes Response Team (SCRT) Wayamo managed to secure.

BUILD THE CAPACITY OF NIGERIAN JOURNALISTS TO REPORT ON INTERNATIONAL CRIMES

To strengthen reporting skills and build knowledge on critical justice-related issues affecting the region, ranging from the role of the International Criminal Court (ICC) in Nigeria to security challenges and the domestic prosecution of alleged Boko Haram suspects.

Conduct a comparative analysis of Rome Statute offences and equivalent domestic crimes in Nigeria

To conduct a comparative analysis of Rome Statute offences and equivalent domestic crimes in Nigeria with the goal of helping Nigerian prosecutors to potentially redraft charges to capture Rome Statute crimes under Nigerian law.
Trainers & Experts
Wayamo training sessions are provided by a handpicked mix of international, local and regional experts drawn from international organisations, ranging from the International Criminal Court (ICC) and the United Nations, to hybrid and ad hoc tribunals, and national jurisdictions. Our trainers are chosen for their in-depth knowledge of Nigerian legislation and military law, their experience in complex investigations, and their expertise in media and human rights. To date, Wayamo has called on 62 different experts to contribute to our training sessions in Nigeria. They include:
  • Legal Experts
  • Sofia CandeiasUN Team of Experts on the Rule of Law and Sexual Violence in Conflict, Office of the Special Representative of the Secretary-General on Sexual Violence in Conflict (OSRSG-SVC)
  • Andrew Cayley CMG QCFormer Director of Service Prosecutions, Service Prosecuting Authority, Ministry of Defence, UK
  • Benjamin Gumpert QCFormer Senior Trial Lawyer, Office of the Prosecutor, International Criminal Court, since June 2020 Circuit Judge London
  • Academic Experts
  • Deji Adekunle 
    Professor of Law, Senior Advocate of Nigeria, currently on sabbatical leave with the National Human Rights Commission
  • Dapo AkandeProfessor of Public International Law, University of Oxford, member of the Africa Group for Justice and Accountability
  • Alex WhitingHead of Investigations, Kosovo Specialist Prosecutor’s Office, and Professor of Practice, Harvard Law School
  • Legal Practitioners
  • Akingbolahan AdeniranForner Rule of Law Advisor, Office of the Vice-President of the Federal Republic of Nigeria and Former Attorney General of Ogun State 
  • Charles Ayodeji Adeogun-Phillips Former genocide and war crimes prosecutor, international lawyer, and founder of Charles Anthony (Lawyers) LLP
  • Adejoké Babington AshayeInternational Law Specialist, and former investigator at the ICC
  • Wayamo Team Members
  • Judie KaberiaEast Africa Co-ordinator, Wayamo Foundation & Executive Director of the Association of Media Women in Kenya
  • Kris KotarskiDigital Programs Manager, Wayamo Foundation
Target Groups

Prosecutors at the Nigerian Ministry of Justice

Wayamo trains members of the Complex Casework Group, a specialised unit of prosecutors coming under the Directorate of Public Prosecutions at the Ministry of Justice who aim to address terrorist acts and international crimes under Nigerian criminal law. These include crimes that may potentially fall under the jurisdiction of the International Criminal Court (ICC).

Military PROSECUTORS and investigators

Wayamo trains representatives of the Nigerian Navy, Army and Air Force who are involved in setting up a highly specialised unit of military investigators and prosecutors (the Serious Crimes Response Team), who would be specifically trained to investigate and prosecute alleged war crimes and crimes against humanity, both of which potentially fall under the jurisdiction of the International Criminal Court (ICC). Wayamo also trains investigators from the Joint Investigation Centre, Maiduguri.

Media and Civil society

Wayamo hosts media engagements for reporters who work on issues pertaining to justice and accountability with the aim of creating a network of expert journalists, specialised in international criminal justice and broader accountability issues.
All Project Updates:
MultiMedia
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Description

There is a window of opportunity to address atrocities committed in Nigeria. With our partners on the ground, we at Wayamo are taking advantage of this to deliver meaningful justice.

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Key Achievements - Workshops held
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Key Achievements - Participants Trained
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What others have said
"Wayamo has taken the bull by the horns, by making serious efforts in putting together a team that will ensure independent and impartial investigations and prosecutions of serious crimes."
Participant in first Wayamo workshop for members of the proposed Serious Crimes Response Team
"The training was one of the best workshops I have ever attended. The resource persons brought their experiences to bear with practical illustrations and deep insights into the topics discussed"
Participant in first Wayamo workshop for members of the proposed Serious Crimes Response Team
Funders

wayamo foundation

About

Wayamo is an independent, non-profit organisation established to strengthen the rule of law, promote justice for international and transnational crimes and foster transparency through judicial capacity building, mediation and informed journalism. Read more

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