2014 (May) - 2020 (April)
African Member of the United Nations Working Group on Arbitrary Detention appointed by the Human Rights Council on 8 May 2014 for a 3-year mandate which was extended until May 2020.
From May 2016 to April 2017, I have assumed the Presidency of the Working Group.
The overall mandate of the Working Group is to investigate cases of arbitrary detention, to take appropriate action to help end the violation and to promote worldwide enforcement of the prohibition of arbitrary detention. See the website of the Working Group (http://www.ohchr.org/EN/
2009 - Now
Legal practice through my firm (Etudes Vihode)
- Human Rights Law especially in Africa with cases before the African Commission/Court for human and peoples’ rights (Court: http://www.african-court.org) (Commission: http://www.achpr.org).
- International Criminal Law.
- International Organizations Labour Law especially the United Nations through its internal disputes mechanism (http://www.un.org/en/oaj/).
- Sports Law with cases before the Court of Arbitration for Sports (http://www.tas-cas.org/).
2018 (May and December)
Consultant for the Office of Legal Counsel of the United Nations Secretariat in connection to certain aspects of air operations within the U.N. peacekeeping missions in Africa.
Consultant for Avocats sans Frontières (Canada) to teach five modules of public international law, international criminal law and human rights at the Law School of the University of Bamako (Mali).
2015 (Dec.) – 2016 (Sept.)
Legal Drafting Reviser for the African Extraordinary Chambers (http://www.
2015 (February to May)
Consultant for the International Commission of Jurists, Kenyan Section, on international criminal justice. I wrote a report on the immunities in international law in connection with the 2014 Protocol relative to criminal jurisdiction granted to the African Court of Justice and Human and Peoples’ Rights (http://www.icj-kenya.org/
paper%20on%20immunities.pdf). The report was disseminated at the June 2015 Summit of the African Union.
2013 (September to December)
Consultant for the African Union Commission on international criminal justice. I wrote a report on the relations between Africa and the International Criminal Court. The report was discussed and approved by an experts group and thereafter adopted by the Executive Council and the Assembly of Heads of State and Government, with a series of recommendations.
2013 (February to December)
Consultant for Avocats sans Frontières (Belgium) on the prosecution of international crimes in the Democratic Republic of the Congo. I wrote a report on a series of judgments delivered by the Congolese courts on genocide, crimes against humanity and war crimes and suggested ways in which the civil society organization could help the judiciary to improve the quality of its jurisprudence (http://www.asf.be/wp-content/
2011 (May to June) and 2009 (August to September)
Consultant for the International Criminal Tribunal for Rwanda (http://www.unictr.org) on legacy issues, running capacity-building workshops for the Kigali Bar Association in Rwanda.
2010 (January to February)
Consultant for the African Court on Human and Peoples’ Rights (http://www.african-court.org)
Senior Legal Officer within the Registry of the International Criminal Tribunal for Rwanda (http://www.unictr.org). Under the supervision of the Registrar, I managed a large team of jurists advising Judges in Trial Chamber III, the Vice-President and the President. We maintained the list of cases before the Trial Chamber and the President, and assisted the Judges in adjudicating the issues in dispute between the parties, including the Judgement. In addition, I represented the Judges and the President in various meetings, within the Registry, with the parties or with external stakeholders including Representatives of Member States of the United Nations. As one of the two most senior jurists within the Section, I assisted in the overall management of the Section, especially running all recruitments and managing some of our judicial databases. Finally, I represented the President and the Judges in the Legacy Committee that was entrusted with the coordination of the thinking at the Tribunal on the post-closure and residual issues. In that capacity, I managed a Tribunal-wide work in feeding the United Nations organs on residual issues: those exchanges have already led to the Presidential Statement of the Security Council on 18 December 2008 on the residual issues and later Resolution 1966 establishing the International Residual Mechanism for Criminal Tribunals. I also coordinated the organization and implementation of capacity building initiatives for Rwandan Judges [Supreme and High Courts] and Lawyers in 2008 and 2009.
In each of those capacities, I was actively involved in preparing the judicial calendar and all related court management operations including budget preparation and implementation, for the Section and for the Tribunal.
Legal Officer in the Office of Public Counsel for Victims of the International Criminal Court (http://www.icc-cpi.int). The Office is administratively attached to the Registrar, and has a two-fold mandate: (i) it provides legal assistance to the legal representatives of the victims, and can replace them on a case-by-case basis; (ii) it represents the victims (individually or by group) in the proceedings before the Court. Within the Office, I provided legal researches and advices, and drafted interlocutory motions and other submissions relevant to the victims in the proceedings. In addition, I built different databases for the management of the cases and our legal researches materials.
Special Assistant to the Deputy Registrar who manages the Judicial and Legal Services Division, within the Registry of the International Criminal Tribunal for Rwanda (http://www.unictr.org). In that position, I was at the heart of the administrative and judicial operations of the Tribunal encompassing inter alia: Court Management Services, Translation and Interpretation Services, Library, Witnesses and Victims, Budget preparation and implementation, staff management, etc. I prepared and attended all strategy meetings with the heads of the various Sections and Units of the Registry, and followed up on the implementation of the decisions taken. I coordinated the preparation of Registry submissions for the Tribunal’s Annual Report to the General Assembly of the UN, and for the Budget of the Tribunal.
After 4 months in that position, I was transferred as Legal Officer to assist the Judges. In that capacity, I coordinated the management of all cases before the Judges with a team of 2 to 5 jurists. Upon special assignment by the President of the Tribunal within the Trial Committee, I also coordinated the management of a wide range of pre-trial matters before the Tribunal, including representing the Judges in meetings with the parties, and reporting to the Presiding Judges and the President of the Tribunal, through the head of the Section who was also the chairperson of the Trial Committee. I served as Executive Secretary of this sensitive Committee whose recommendations have completely reshaped the judicial management of the ICTR and warranted praise from UN member States in the framework of the ICTR Completion Strategy.
In each of those capacities, I made significant contributions in the overall planning and delivery of complex court administration matters.
2000 (July to September)
Pro Bono Legal Assistant to the O.A.U. Ambassador, the Head of the then O.A.U. Permanent Observation Mission at the United Nations in New York. I attended meetings of the United Nations Security Council in order to report on political and legal affairs relevant to the continent that were discussed. It was during my stay that the Resolution mandating the Secretary-General to negotiate an agreement for the establishment of the Special Court for Sierra Leone was adopted. I also assisted the Ambassador in the secretariat of the African Group at the United Nations.
Experience in Teaching
2009-Now: Assistant Professor within the Historical and Political Science Department at Arcadia University (www.arcadia.edu), teaching introduction to international law, human rights, politics in the developing world and comparative politics, while redesigning the program in Paris (France) and designing new programs in Africa for The College of Global Studies. From 2009 to 2013, I was working for The College of Global Studies, assigned as the Academic Director of the Arcadia Center for East African Studies based at the Nyerere Centre for Peace Research in Arusha (Tanzania).
2016-2017: Professeur invité at Université d’Evry (http://www.univ-evry.fr/) (France) teaching a graduate course on international criminal law; and at Université Aix-Marseille (http://www.univ-amu.fr) (France) teaching a summer professional course on human rights litigation (http://www.aixglobaljustice.
2013-2015: Professeur Invité at Université Paris II (Panthéon-Assas) (www.u-paris2.fr) (France) where I am teaching a seminar course on human rights law in Africa for Master Students.
2012-2013: Visiting Lecturer at Tumaini University in Iringa (www.tumaini.ac.tz) (Tanzania) where I taught LLM Students various subjects of international law including telecommunications law in Africa, Internet law and governance and human rights.
2011 (September). Visiting Professor at Hakuoh University, International Career Development Program, teaching about conflict resolution in Africa and International Justice.
2001-2010. Teaching Mentor for the distance learning postgraduate programme in human rights of the University of Nantes (France). From 2001 to 2003, I was the coordinator of the teaching team.
2007-2009: Visiting Lecturer in different universities in France, South Africa and United States of America where I taught various subjects of public international law including human rights, international labour law and international criminal law.
2000-2002. Visiting Lecturer at the National School of Administration (Ecole Nationale d’Administration) in public international law, including international organizations law and human rights.
2000-2002. Assistant Lecturer at Université Paris II (Panthéon-Assas) (www.u-paris2.fr) (France) in constitutional law, public international law, and international humanitarian law.
1998-1999. Assistant Lecturer at the University of Bouaké (Côte d’Ivoire) in public and international law, including comparative constitutional law, human rights, and humanitarian law.