Nigeria News

Eboe-Osuji emerges first Nigerian judge of the ICC


Nigeria on Friday night produced its first judge of the International Criminal Court, after 15 rounds of voting in New York.

Nigeria’s Chile Eboe-Osuji, 49, got 102 votes to pick up the final vacant seat.

Eboe-Osuji, who is enrolled both at the Nigerian and Canadian bars, is currently the Legal Advisor of the UN High Commission for Human Rights. Before that, he was the Head of Chambers for the UN International Criminal Tribunal on Rwanda.

This is his second attempt at the ICC judgeship having stood also in 2008 ICC elections, Empowered Newswire reported.

But it was a long road for him and Nigeria to clinch one of the six vacant seats at the world’s permanent criminal court after 18 candidates from 18 countries started the contest on Monday afternoon at the UN headquarters.

Of the six vacant seats, only two were available for countries in Africa and Western Europe and other states to enter, since the four other vacant seats were reserved for Asian countries and the Latin American and Caribbean groups at the UN.

In previous elections to the ICC judgeships, groups of Africa and the Western Europe had their reserved seats.

In the event, the first four winners came from those two groups of Asian states and the Latin America/Caribbean states

Regarding the other two generally opened seats, the fight was a straight one between seven African countries, ( Nigeria, Burkina Faso, Democratic Republic of Congo, Niger, Sierra Leone, Mauritius, and the Central African Republic, CAR) and two leading western nations, France and United Kingdom.

Although the African Union had endorsed only Nigeria and Mauritius for the election, the five other nations from the continent still went on to exercise their rights to nominate candidates for the election, thereby splitting African votes in seven places and making it impossible for the early emergence of any African nation in the earlier voting rounds.

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