The International Criminal Court and Africa
Study focuses on exploring the extent to which the ICC exercises its judicial powers in African countries such as Uganda, Democratic Republic of Congo, Central African Republic, Libya, Sudan and Kenya. In the study, selected African cases investigated and prosecuted by ICC in the past 15 years are considered. The researcher applied both cross-sectional research design and the desk-review design. It is also established that despite the position of the Court in trying suspects, its handling of cases has been highly criticized due to the desire to hold domestic trials against their own citizens as a sign of justice and being exemplary. Further, observer’s praise the Court’s actions having set up justice process against impunity on the African continent although some critics allege that the ICC’s position on African matters seems overstretched and partial. Quite a number of critics have alleged that the Court’s investigations on the African continent have stimulated concerns of disrespect for sovereignty among the ICC Member States owing to the continent’s long history of foreign intervention. It is of high desire that State Parties to the ICC consider the amendment of the Rome Statute to align with the primary instruments in the African context such as the AU Constitutive Act, as this would collectively deliberate for harmonized prosecutions that are legally acceptable. In conclusion, regardless of the widely held public uncertainties of African states and citizens about the role of the Court, it is evident that the current wave of beliefs might still hold in the future if no signs of neutrality are demonstrated in its actions. It is established that the Court’s position to prosecute incumbent political leaders in Africa still holds despite the inconsistences between the AU and ICC instruments. Major concerns of Africa about the Court including international justice, sovereignty, and the feasibility of prosecuting incumbent leaders remain a detriment to the perceptions among Member States on the continent.