Presentation: "An African Judicial Network - Building Community, Delivering Justice"
9-11 November 2017
In November 2017, Tom Gerald Daly, one of the Co-Convenors of the Constitution Transformation Network, presented on the topic "An African Judicial Network: Building Community, Delivering Justice" at the Third African Judicial Dialogue convened by the African Court on Human and Peoples’ Rights in Arusha, Tanzania, 9-11 November 2017. The Dialogue was attended by judges from the African Court, regional community courts, highest domestic courts across the African Union, and representatives of the EU, World Bank, and Pan-African Lawyers Union (PALU), among others.
Tom was engaged by the African Court on Human and Peoples’ Rights to propose a design for an African Judicial Network, to create a platform for formal collaboration between courts and other judicial bodies on the African continent.
The envisaged collaboration will be between and among continental, regional and national judicial institutions. It is envisaged that once the formal collaboration is implemented through the proposed judicial network, courts of African Union Member States and African Union Regions will work together in finding solutions to challenges they face in upholding the rule of law and the promotion and protection of human and peoples' rights. The judicial bodies will also assist one another in various efforts to reform and strengthen their judiciaries. It is also envisaged that the African judicial bodies will share their best practices and jurisprudence with one another in order to ensure that together, they foster respect for the rule of law and the delivery of an accessible, impartial and expeditious justice to the African people.
Tom’s proposed design and Draft Statute for the African Judicial Network, based on a survey of comparable judicial networks worldwide and on consideration of the particularities of the African Union context, was adopted by the delegates at the African Judicial Dialogue and will be developed during 2018.
Tom was engaged as an expert on courts and judicial networks, having previously worked at the Supreme Court of Ireland, worked with a variety of international judicial organisations, and published widely on judicial networks and the relationship between national and international courts, including a recent monograph with Cambridge University Press, The Alchemists: Questioning Our Faith in Courts as Democracy-Builders.
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This report was produced by Tom Gerald Daly in his individual capacity under a consultancy contract with the African Court on Human and Peoples' Rights. Copyright rests with the African Court. The report proposes a design for an African Judicial Network to link highest domestic courts, regional community courts and continental courts across the African Union. Tom's proposed design, based on a wide-ranging review of international judicial networks and analysis of the specific context of the AU, was adopted by the delegates at the African Judicial Dialogue held in Arusha, Tanzania on 9-11 November 2017. The Network will be developed in the coming years.