Martin Okwir, the ICC Outreach Coordinator told URN in an interview that the chambers invited experts, victim’s organizations and Civil Society Organization among others with deeper knowledge on the victims’ situations to write and request the court to permit them to offer advice and opinions on how best the reparations should be conducted.
organizations have written to the International Criminal Court –ICC seeking
permission to advise the court on the proper mode of paying reparations to the
victims of the rebel Lord’s Resistance Army –LRA war.
The organisations responded to the request by the Trial Chamber IX on May 6th, 2021
for proposals on the reparations of the victims shortly after sentencing
Dominic Ongwen, the former commander of LRA’s Siniya brigade to 25 years in
jail for committing 61 counts of war crimes and crimes against humanity in
Northern Uganda between July 1st 2002 and December 31st 2005.
Martin Okwir, the ICC Outreach Coordinator told URN in an interview that the
chambers invited experts, victim’s organizations and Civil Society Organization
among others with deeper knowledge on the victims’ situations to write and
request the court to permit them to offer advice and opinions on how best the
reparations should be conducted. According to Okwir, by the expiry of the
deadline for the submission on June 7th, ICC had received requests from nine
organizations in Northern Uganda.
He, however, declined to reveal the names of the organizations.
Okwir says the court will select the ones that meet all the requirements and ask
them to submit their proposals by September 6th this year.
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Okwir revealed that it is the recommendations and proposal from these organizations
that will help inform the mode of reparations of the war victims.
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Maria Kamara Mabinty, the ICC Outreach Coordinator for East Africa, says that the
information the judges would like to obtain is the approximate number of direct
and indirect victims of the crimes for, which Dominic Ongwen has been accused
of, legal issues or particular facts that could serve for the identification of
the victims, victim or groups of victims that may need to be prioritized and
the type and extent of harm suffered by the victims for which Ongwen was
convicted on February 4th.
He says that other types of reparations that
would be adequate to address is the harm suffered and estimates as to the cost
to repair the harm suffered by the victims among others. Dominic Ongwen’s led
lawyer, Crispus Odongo Ayena, says that the reparation should not only by
limited to few victims but it should cover the entire Northern Region.