Skip to comments.Panjshir “Model” for Rule of Law Training
Posted on 02/03/2010 4:07:05 PM PST by SandRat
PANJSHIR PROVINCE, Afghanistan – The Panjshir Ministry of Justice, together with the Independent Afghanistan Bar Association, hosted the valleys first-ever Rule of Law training conference, Jan 19 –26, in an effort to build capacity in the administration of justice in Panjshir province, Afghanistan.
50 local officials including judges, prosecutors, police officers and other members of the justice sector participated in the training. The curriculum covered prison, civil and juvenile law, civil rights, ethics and anti-corruption, monitoring of government departments, role of the defense attorney, illegal detentions, investigations, inheritance, criminal procedures, crimes against the government, and other legal issues.
Mr. Mahboobullah Nikzad, the Panjshir Provincial Reconstruction Team Rule of Law expert and co-developer of the conference, claims a lack of coordination and understanding between the various departments in the justice process was the catalyst for the development of the program.
"Each sector has its role in the administration of justice," he said. "We brought them all together to teach them what those roles are so they would understand their boundaries and those of the others to build cooperation and eliminate confusion."
In his opening remarks to the participants, Lt. Col. Eric W. Hommel, Panjshir PRT commander, offered praise and encouragement.
"Without a legitimate functioning justice system, society breaks down and trust in government ceases to exist," he said. "This conference is an important step in the development of a legitimate rule of law system in Panjshir."
The main challenge was finding a way to get most district officials involved and trained in a high-impact and low-cost method, as well as foster good will for the program. Instructors conducted classes at a single location in the provincial center of Bazarak to facilitate greater participation. Local national attorneys from the IABA taught the courses in order to bring the association closer to the sub-national officials and increase its profile in the provinces.
According to Ms. Hawa Ghaus, Department of State Rule of Law advisor, the training was successful for many reasons. In addition to the specialized legal education it provided, participants were both intellectually engaged in the legal instruction and actively engaged in debating important legal issues.
"Panjshir's justice officials found the training to be useful and our efforts to be sincere," said Ghaus. "As a result, they have expressed their desire to work with us more closely and constructively from this point forward."
Panjshir is the first province in Afghanistan's Regional Command-East Area of Operations to conduct Rule of Law training, chosen to serve as the model for future training in the provinces of Bamyan and Parwan.
Photos: Panjshir “Model” for Rule of Law Training