African judges meet on tackling HIV/AIDS
30 October 2013, 11:11
Nairobi - Over 50 African judges and magistrates on Tuesday started to share experiences on HIV/AIDS- related human rights and the law.
Kenya's Supreme Court President Willy Mutungai said the meeting will provide an opportunity for judges and magistrates to discuss effective strategies and programs for judicial education so as to help ensure the various judiciaries are able to make informed decisions on HIV-related human rights issues.
"At the end of the dialogue, it is expected that the judicial officers will have greater awareness on the role of the law and the courts in protecting the rights of people living with HIV," Mutunga said.
The Judicial Dialogue on HIV, Human Rights and the Law has drawn judicial officers from Botswana, Burundi, Kenya, Lesotho, Malawi, South Africa, Swaziland, Tanzania, Uganda and Zambia.
This is the first dialogue in Africa aiming at taking forward the recommendations of the Global Commission on HIV and the Law, which is responsible for increasing awareness among key constituencies on issues of rights and law with respect to HIV and strengthening civil society's ability to campaign, advocate and lobby.
The workshop which started Monday and ends Thursday, is organized by the Judiciary Training Institute and Kenya Ethical and Legal Network in partnership with the United Nations Development Program (UNDP-Kenya) and UNAIDS.
Hon. Justice Edwin Cameron of the Constitutional Court of South Africa and Hon. Justice Oagile Dingake of the High Court of Botswana are among those expected to speak at the forum.
The regional judicial dialogue will also provide an opportunity for discussion and experience-sharing between judges and magistrates from Kenya and those from east and southern Africa on the complicated legal and human rights issues posed by the HIV epidemic.