ABA ROLI hosted a conference in collaboration with The Gambian Judiciary from February 7-8, 2023, as part of the Celebration of the Legal Year 2023. Bringing together Gambian judges, magistrates, legal practitioners, state law officers, Judiciary staff, as well as participants from the United Kingdom and judges from the United States, the goal of the conference was to review the Rules of Practice and Procedure of the High Court and the Subordinate Courts, and Case Management in The Gambia.
Since June 2021, ABA ROLI has implemented the five-year, USAID-funded Promoting Rights and Justice (PRJ) Activity in The Gambia through a consortium with Freedom House. The PRJ project seeks to help lay the foundations for The Gambia’s budding democracy, following two decades of dictatorship under former President Yahya Jammeh—which ended in 2017. For years, the Judiciary operated under executive control with little assistance from the international community. As a result, communities in remote areas face the greatest challenges to accessing justice and basic services. The PRJ team is supporting The Gambia in its efforts to restore the rule of law, build strong institutions, adopt laws and practices to enhance good governance, and foster a culture of respect for human rights.
The conference was divided into eight sessions, during which various presenters analyzed aspects of court rules that could be revised and updated—with a particular focus on the Gambian High Court Amendment Rules of 2013 and the use of information technology.