WATCH: AU Commission has no standing in ICC, says Dlamini-Zuma

2016-10-26 14:18
Nkosazana Dlamini-Zuma. (File: AFP)

Nkosazana Dlamini-Zuma. (File: AFP)

Multimedia   ·   User Galleries   ·   News in Pictures Send us your pictures  ·  Send us your stories

Cape Town – Chairperson of the African Union Commission, Nkosazana Dlamini Zuma, has said that the AU "has no standing in the ICC" and therefore, it is "purely" the decision of African countries to join or to withdraw from the Hague-based tribunal. 

Dlamini-Zuma said this in Pretoria where she engaged with South African editors on her blueprint agenda 2063 for the AU. 

"The AU commission has no standing in the ICC. We are not members. It’s a purely sovereign decision of each country to join or to pull out," Dlamini Zuma said.

Listen to the audio piece below as she speaks.

Her remarks came following the move last week by South Africa to withdraw from the Rome statute. 

The decision followed a dispute last year when Sudanese President Omar al-Bashir visited the country for an AU summit despite facing an ICC warrant over alleged war crimes.

South Africa was the second country in the same week, after Burundi, to leave the ICC. 

Meanwhile, Gambia, on Tuesday also joined the queue to leave the international court, accusing it of “humiliating Africans”.

Dlamini-Zuma maintained that Africa had a mechanism to try its own leaders, adding that the ICC was the “last instance”.

"Countries must strengthen their judiciary. The ICC is the court of last instance. The first instance are the national courts. They must be strengthened so that they can indeed deal with situations that arise," she said.

Dlamini-Zuma made reference to the trial of former Chad president Hissen Habre who was sentenced to life in May for crimes against humanity. 

Habre was sentenced by a special African Union court set up to try him a quarter century after he fled to Senegal following his 1990 ouster by the country’s current president Idriss Deby.

Habre was also ordered to pay compensation to thousands of his victims of up to $33 000 each. 

The landmark conviction was seen by rights campaigners as a victory in the fight against impunity.

"We at the moment have the former president of Chad who has been tried in an African court agreed by the AU, funded by the AU, with judges coming from the AU. He has been tried for atrocities in Chad and he was found guilty. Of course he is now appealing the sentence. But I’m saying that the continent has mechanisms also of dealing with this," said Dlamini-Zuma. 

She reiterated that the court that tried Habre was indeed authentic.

"The court that tried Habre is not weak. It was set up to specifically try him. It has tried hi. It has found him guilty and it has sentenced him. So it’s possible to have a tribunal court in Africa," said Dlamini-Zuma.

Read more on:    au  |  international criminal court  |  nkosazana dlamini-zuma  |  omar al-bashi  |  burundi  |  chad  |  sa  |  sudan  |  south africa  |  east africa  |  west africa  |  southern africa  |  africa

Join the conversation!

24.com encourages commentary submitted via MyNews24. Contributions of 200 words or more will be considered for publication.

We reserve editorial discretion to decide what will be published.
Read our comments policy for guidelines on contributions.
NEXT ON NEWS24X

Inside News24

 
/News

Book flights

Compare, Book, Fly

Traffic Alerts
There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.
 
English
Afrikaans
isiZulu

Hello 

Create Profile

Creating your profile will enable you to submit photos and stories to get published on News24.


Please provide a username for your profile page:

This username must be unique, cannot be edited and will be used in the URL to your profile page across the entire 24.com network.

Settings

Location Settings

News24 allows you to edit the display of certain components based on a location. If you wish to personalise the page based on your preferences, please select a location for each component and click "Submit" in order for the changes to take affect.




Facebook Sign-In

Hi News addict,

Join the News24 Community to be involved in breaking the news.

Log in with Facebook to comment and personalise news, weather and listings.