NAIROBI, Kenya, Oct 25 – The search for a new ICC Prosecutor to replace Luis Moreno Ocampo has began after Sate Assemblies President Ambassador Christian Wenaweser received a list of names of possible candidates from the search committee on Tuesday.
According to the International Criminal Court website, the committee submitted a list of individuals for the Assembly to select Ocampo’s successor to take up the office in June 2012.
“In a special meeting of the Bureau which was open to States Parties, the President of the Assembly of States Parties, Ambassador Christian Wenaweser, introduced the report of the Search Committee for the position of Prosecutor, dated 22 October 2011,” the website says.
The committee set up last December is composed of five members each representing regional groups of the member states.
Tanzania’s Chief Justice Mohamed Chande Othman and ICC Deputy Prosecutor Fatou Bensouda are some of the candidates shortlisted to replace Ocampo.
Others include International Co-Prosecutor in the Cambodian court Andrew Cayley and War crimes Counsel in the Department of Justice in Canada Robert Petit.
The committee mandated to propose and elect Ocampo’s predecessor by consensus has a timeline of up to February 2012.
“It is understood that the election of the Prosecutor should take place in time to allow for a transitional period of several months before the term of the current Prosecutor expires in June 2012. The election would therefore ideally take place at the tenth session of the Assembly, but in any event no later than February 2012,” the site indicated.
Issues of confidentiality and transparency are key in the nomination and election process.
The search committee is also expected to observe extensive research of the candidates by contacting civil society groups, local and international associations of the applicants and other sources that can provide information on them.
It read, “The Search Committee will also actively identify and informally approach individuals who may satisfy the applicable criteria and who may subsequently express their interest to be considered. They will review the expressions of interest in light of the relevant criteria.”
Upon completion of the exercise the search committee will then submit a list of at least three suitable candidates for consideration by the Bureau.
The Bureau of the Assembly consists of a President, two Vice-Presidents and 18 members elected by the Assembly for three-year terms.
The current Bureau assumed its functions on November 14, 2008 and is composed of President Wenaweser, vice Presidents Jorge Lomonaco and Simona Mirela and has Simona Drenik as the Rapporteur.
Kenya is also a member alongside Nigeria, South Africa, Gabon, Burkina Faso and Brazil.
Other members include Australia, Estonia, Georgia, Japan, Jordan, Norway, Samoa, Spain, Britain and Northern Ireland, Venezuela, Trinidad and Tobago.
Kenya’s six suspects under ICC investigations are likely to face a new Prosecutor if their charges are confirmed.