ICC elects Uganda’s Solomy Balungi as judge


As the International Criminal Court voted for its judges in New York, Justice Solomy Balunji, a Ugandan, won the fourth round of the voting, by 81 votes, hence becoming an ICC judge at the Hague based Court.

Justice Balungi made the mark as the second Ugandan Judge to join the International Court after Julia Sebutinde another Ugandan judge who joined the International Court of Justice (ICJ) in 2012.

The two Ugandan women judges are honored to be the first African women to sit on the International Court of Justice.

Japan and Peru’s candidates Tomoko Akane and Bañez Carranza Luz Del Carmen with 88 and 77 votes respectively, were the first to be elected, coming top in round one. Six places were being filled.

Uganda’s Permanent Representative to the UN Adonio Ayebare confirmed the result of Solomy’s victory late Tuesday.

‘Glad to announce the election of Justice Balungi Solomy Bosa of Uganda as Judge of the ICC. Thank you team Uganda,’ he tweeted.

Balungi has been a human rights activist since 1980 and founded a non-profit organization including the East African Centre for Constitutional Development, the Uganda Network on HIV, AIDS, Ethics and the Law and the Uganda Law Society.

Balungi was a lecturer at the Law Development Centre of Uganda from 1981 until 1997 and she was a legal practitioner from 1988 until 1997, representing indigent women and expanding legal aid, including serving as President of the Uganda Law Society.

She became a Judge on the High Court of Uganda from 1997 until 2013.

In 2013, she was appointed by Ugandan Constitutional Court, and in 2014, she was one of the judges who canceled Uganda’s Anti-Homosexuality Act for not being passed with the required quorum.

ICC member states had nominated 12 candidates for election to six vacant judicial positions at The Hague-based Court.

ICC member states Lesotho, Uganda, Croatia, Mongolia, Benin, Japan, Bosnia, Peru, Uruguay, Canada, Ghana and Italy were nominated.

The election of judges at the 16th Assembly of States Parties (ASP) session in New York, follows the Court’s regular judicial elections process, which replaces a third of the 18 judges’ bench every three years. The new judges will serve a nine-year term from March 2018.











Reporter: Shamilah Namuddu

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