Some Phenomenal Women - In Consideration of Women's Day on 8th March

She's KIND
She's FAIR​

Photo Credit: Judge Florence Mumba- Atlas Women /Judge Rosalyn Higgins - London School of Economics and Political Science
(Left) Judge Florence Mumba was the first African woman to be elected to an international court in The Hague, upon her election to the International Criminal Tribunal for the former Yugoslavia (ICTY) in 1997, and subsequently served as Vice President, as well as Judge of the Appeals Chamber of the Court, and its sister tribunal, the International Criminal Tribunal for Rwanda (ICTR). The first female judge to be appointed to the High Court in her native Zambia in 1980, Mumba subsequently rose to the position of Supreme Court judge. She currently serves as a judge of the Supreme Court Chamber of the Extraordinary Chambers in the Courts of Cambodia (ECCC). Judge Mumba says, not to blow her own trumpet, but she believes that the good work she did in The Hague paved the way for other African women to be elected to international courts and tribunals.
 (Right) Judge Rosalyn Higgins was the first woman to be elected to the International Court of Justice (ICJ), in 1995, fifty years after the Court's establishment in 1945, and later became President of the ICJ in 2006. Previous to her work at the ICJ, Judge Higgins was a barrister, a Professor in International Law, and served on the UN Human Rights Committee from 1984-1995.
Photo Credit: Judge Annie Jiagge - Judge Gabrielle Kirk McDonald - 
(Left) Judge Annie Jiagge, was the first female judge in Ghana. She was appointed as a judge to the Circuit Court in 1959, and to the High Court in 1961. In 1969 she was appointed to the Court of Appeal. Judge Jiagge was also a women's rights advocate and was selected to represent Ghana in the United Nations Commission on the Status of Women in 1962. She was elected Rapporteur of the Commission in 1966, and President in 1968. She has been described as the driving force of the Commission helping to 'shape its programmes and develop its unwavering focus'. She was instrumental in authoring the basic draft Declaration on the Elimination of Discrimination against Women. Annie Jiagge was a founding member of Women's World Banking. In 1993, UN Secretary-General Dr. Boutros Boutros-Ghali requested her to be a member of his advisory group to plan the Fourth World Conference on Women, held in Beijing in 1995. She could not attend the conference itself due to ill health. Secretary-General Boutros Boutros-Ghali had this to say upon Jiagge's death in 1996: '...even where her name has not been heard, her impact has been felt. Generations of women of every class and corner of the world have much to thank her for'.
(Right) Judge Gabrielle Kirk McDonald, was among the first judges to be elected to the International Criminal Tribunal for the former Yugoslavia (ICTY); and the first female to become President of the ICTY in 1997. Beginning her career as a staff attorney for the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP) in her native USA, she rose to become the third African American woman to be appointed to a federal judgeship in the US.
(Left) Ayeshah Jammeh, is Secretary at the Gambia Centre for Victims and Human Rights Abuse. She is the niece of former Gambian leader, Yahya Jammeh. Her father and aunt were killed by their own brother, Yahya Jammeh. She advocates for justice for Yahya Jammeh’s victims.
(Right) Fatoumata Sandeng, is the President of the Solo Sandeng Foundation and daughter of slain Gambian activist, Solo Sandeng. She advocates for justice for the victims of Yahya Jammeh. Her father was tortured to death while in police custody, with his torture filmed on video upon Jammeh’s orders. 
Photo Credit: Judge Kimberly Prost - Africa Legal Aid/Judge Julia Sebutinde - Flickr
(Left) Judge Kimberly Prost, was elected to the International Criminal Court (ICC) in 2017. Prior to that, she was Chef de Cabinet to Judge Silvia Fernández de Gurmendi, the first female President of the ICC. Prost began her career at the Department of Justice in her native Canada, and has since held a number of esteemed positions. She was Ombudsperson for the United Nations Security Council Al-Qaida Sanctions Committee; ad-litem judge at the International Criminal Tribunal for the former Yugoslavia (ICTY); and worked at the UN Office on Drugs and Crime. 
(Right) Judge Julia Sebutinde is the first, and so far only African woman, to be elected to the International Court of Justice (ICJ) in 2011, since its establishment in 1945. Yet, men from sub-Saharan African countries have been members of this Court since the 1960s. She previously served as a High Court Judge in her native Uganda, where she presided over a number of commissions of inquiry on corruption. From 2005-2011, Judge Sebutinde was a judge at the Special Court for Sierra Leone and was on the bench of the Charles Taylor trial.
Photo Credit: Judge Christine Van den Wyngaert - University of Utrecht/ Judge Navanethem Pillay -
A renowned scholar and later an international judge, Christine Van den Wyngaert, from Belgium(pictured left) has been celebrated for her contributions to international and comparative criminal law. She was a judge of the International Criminal Court (ICC); the International Criminal Tribunal for the former Yugoslavia (ICTY); and is currently on the Roster of International Judges of the Kosovo Specialist Chambers. Van den Wyngaert served as an ad hoc judge at the International Court of Justice (ICJ) in the Arrest Warrant case between the Democratic Republic of Congo and Belgium. Her dissenting opinion in that case (2002) is said to be more famous than the judgement itself. Her 2014 dissenting opinion in the confirmation of charges against Laurent Gbagbo, former President of Côte d'Ivoire, is often quoted following the recent acquittal of Laurent Gbagbo and Charles Blé Goudé.
Judge Navanethem Pillay (pictured right) from South Africa, became the first African woman to sit on an international tribunal, when she was elected to the International Criminal Tribunal for Rwanda (ICTR) in 1995. She was elected President of the ICTR in 1999. Pillay was the only woman on the three-judge panel that established the landmark Akayesu judgement’s finding that rape may constitute an act of genocide. The Akayesu judgement also endorsed the application of the doctrine of command responsibility, for atrocity crimes committed by civilian leaders and their subordinates. In 2003 Pillay was elected to the newly established International Criminal Court (ICC), and served in the Appeals Chamber. Pillay achieved another historical first in 2008: she was the first African person to be appointed United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights. Judge Pillay contributed to the Africa Legal Aid (AFLA) initiated Cairo-Arusha Principles on Universal Jurisdiction in Respect of Gross Human Rights Offences: An African Perspective, adopted in 2002.    
Photo Credit: Judge Fatoumata Dembélé Diarra - Mekgwe - International Institute for Democracy and Electoral Assistance (IDEA).
(Left) Judge Fatoumata Dembélé Diarra, was one of the first judges elected to the International Criminal Court (ICC), in 2003. In 2009 Diarra was elected First Vice President of the ICC. Prior to her work at the ICC, Diarra served as an ad-litem judge at the International Criminal Tribunal for the former Yugoslavia (ICTY). Previous to this, she was the National Director of the Administration of Justice in her native Mali. Diarra has been active in a number of civil society organisations, and serves as the President of the Observatoire des Droits de la Femme et de l'Enfant. She currently serves as President of the Board of the University of Legal and Political Science of Bamako.  
(Right) Dr. Pinkie Mekgwe, from Botswana, is an expert in gender and literary studies, and has worked in such areas as creative writing; the media and gender justice; education and research administration; and gender and democracy. She was Executive Director of Internationalism at the University of Johannesburg; Deputy Director of the Office of International Education at the University of Botswana; and was Program Officer at the Council for the Development of Social Research in Africa (CODESRIA). She currently works as Senior Regional Adviser for Africa and West Asia at International IDEA.
Photo Credit: Patricia Viseur Sellers - United Nations Regional Information Centre/ Angela Mudukuti -
(Left) Patricia Viseur Sellers, is an expert in international criminal law and humanitarian law, whose expertise on gender justice is highly sought after. Sellers is a Special Adviser on Gender to the ICC Prosecutor, and is a Visiting Fellow at the Kellogg College of Oxford. She has held advisory positions on gender for various UN bodies. She is the recipient of the Prominent Women in International Law Award  of the American Society of International Law, and was made an Honorary Fellow for Lifetime Achievement by her alma mater, the University of Pennsylvania. Sellers was one of the first trial lawyers of the International Criminal Tribunal of the former Yugoslavia (ICTY), and was involved in developing case strategies on the prosecution of sexual violence. 
(Right) Angela Mudukuti is an international criminal justice lawyer from Zimbabwe, committed to enhancing international criminal justice in Africa. She has worked on precedent-setting cases on crimes against humanity and universal jurisdiction. Notably, she was involved in advocacy and litigation, for the attempt at executing the outstanding ICC arrest warrant against President Omar al-Bashir of Sudan, during his visit to South Africa. She has worked for the Immediate Office of the Prosecutor of the International Criminal Court (ICC), and at the International Institute for Criminal Justice and Human Rights in Siracusa, Italy, under the supervision of Professor Cherif Bassiouni
She serves on the Peer Review Panel of the Africa Legal Aid (AFLA) Quarterly.
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