Dominic Ongwen to Start defence of His Trial in August this year
Former LRA commandant Dominic Ongwen is set to begin his defence in August this year at the seat of the International Criminal Court in the Hague .
This has been confirmed by Dahirou Sant-Anna ; an international cooperation Advisor from the office of the prosecutor at ICC.
This as Sant-Anna was briefing the media in Kampala, on the update of the Ongwen trial which started in January last year .
Sant-Anna told the press that prosecution closed its case in April this year with evidence from 116 witnesses who also included victims of the atrocities’ allegedly committed by Ongwen.
Among them ; were 7 women forced by Ongwen to Marry him, ten UPDF soldiers, former LRA fighters who were under Ongwen’s Brigarde , child soldiers who were abducted and enlisted into rebel activities and expert witnesses who testified about Ongwen’s mental status .
Sant-Anna further explained that some of the witnesses gave their evidence by way of recorded statements while others physically travelled to testify at the Hague.
He further said Ongwen will have witnesses to defend him.
Meanwhile the Rome statute which saw the establishment of the ICC will be commemorating 20 years on 17th/July since its inception in 1998.
The Theme of the occassions will be “Building a more just World ”
The Court will be engaged in a number of activities here in Uganda among which will include an inter-community football match among the LRA infested communities in Northern Uganda and a school quiz competition.
The ICC has however, met criticisms for targeting mainly African leaders who have been tried , convicted , while some are currently under going trial and about 15 arrest warrants are pending before the said court.