At the end of the third Moot Court competition on International Humanitarian Law (IHL), organized by the International Community of the Red Cross (ICRC), Fourah Bay College (FBC) has again emerged as winners for the third time since the start of the competition.
The FBC will therefore be representing the country in this year’s competition in Arusha, Tanzania.
“You have put on a very good performance. Though you have not become lawyers yet you were on the right track when you were doing your presentations,” the judge of the panel of jury, Justice Gelaga King who is President of the Special Court for Sierra Leone, told the wining team.
He told them that, “the legal profession is a unique one and the tools of the trade are the spoken words and these words are English. In presenting your case you have to persuade the judges to see your points and you can only achieve this goal through the English Language. If you observe this principle then you will become fine lawyers and you will excel among your colleagues.”
Justice Gelaga King said, “the ICRC has done a good job especially for students doing law in colleges,” adding that all the colleges and universities which made presentations did a very good work as they all went to the competition and did the work delegated to them.
The head of the ICRC delegation, Jurg Montani, said their mandate was to protect victims of armed conflicts in respect of the International Humanitarian Law (IHL).
He however disclosed that though “Sierra Leone is a signatory to most of the IHL treaties the country has been lagging behind in domesticating these treaties”.
The ICRC, he went on, was working with the army and the IHL had been integrated into all of their trainings because they wanted to create an awareness of the IHL in every sphere of the country.
“IHL will be effective where there is a court to try the act of violation on IHL so I challenge you to keep the IHL alive,” he said.
The ICRC head of delegation said they were using students in the competition as it was compulsory.