IIJ’s Global Central Authorities Initiative: Building Strong Procedural Mechanisms for Mutual Legal Assistance (MLA)

5 - 8 December 2022
Nairobi, Kenya

In December 2022, the IIJ launched a new Canada-funded project to strengthen mutual legal assistance in Kenya and Somalia by organizing a National Workshop for Kenyan Stakeholders in Nairobi. This event, the first of five envisioned under the grant, assisted Kenyan practitioners from the Central and competent authorities in finalising key foundational documents and identifying areas where their mutual legal assistance (MLA) mechanisms could be reinforced.

The workshop was broken into two distinct parts, The first part included a drafting workshop for the Office of the Director of Public Prosecutions (ODPP) to finalise their internal prosecutorial Guidelines on MLA, building on previous ODPP initiatives supported by OPDAT and the UK. These guidelines, along with flowcharts, templates and checklists, will simplify and harmonise MLA practice among prosecutors in both Nairobi and Kenya’s 49 states. The second part of the workshop gathered representatives of Kenya’s Central and competent authorities for the first time since 2016 to consider Kenya’s existing MLA mechanisms, define and clarify roles, and collectively reflect on how the MLA system could be further improved.

The next event under the grant, scheduled for the first quarter of 2023, will gather Somalian authorities for a similar analysis of their existing MLA framework and areas for improvement. The IIJ will then return to Kenya in March 2023 to continue its support to the ODPP as it finalizes and validates its internal Guidelines and puts them into use.

For more information on this workshop, please contact the IIJ at info@theiij.org.

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