Meet the 2003-2004 Fellows

Rita Akena is the Secretary to the Bank and Chief Legal Counsel of Tanzania Postal Bank. She is also an active member of the Tanzania Women Lawyers Association (TAWLA), the Tanganyika Law Society, the Zanzibar Law Society, and the East Africa Law Society and serves as a member of the Advocates Ethics Committee within the Tanganyika Law Society. Ms Akena is an Advocate of the High Court of Zanzibar through which she is assigned pro bono cases by the Zanzibar Law Society. Her focus during her Humphrey Fellowship will be to study how HIV/AIDS impacts on the workplace and the best intervening options available.

   

Alaa El Shimy was a former police officer, U.N. liaison officer, and district attorney in Egypt. He currently serves as a Judge with the Ministry of Justice where he works within the North Cairo Court jurisdiction. He hears both criminal and civil cases, as well as conducts investigations in collaboration with judicial and technical experts. In addition, Judge El Shimy leads special training sessions for new judges at the National Center for Judiciary Studies and gives lectures to the students of the Police College on both Law and the English language. As a Humphrey Fellow, Judge El Shimy wants to pursue human rights law, specifically focusing on the rights of prisoners.

   

Hauwa Ibrahim is a Senior Partner in the General Law Practice of the Aires Law Firm located in Garki Abuja, Nigeria, as well as the Pro Bono Legal Aid Counsel. She also serves as a consultant to many Human Rights and non Governmental Organizations. Since 1999, Ms. Ibrahim has led a team of lawyers as defense Counsels in addressing issues corresponding to the implementation of the Islamic Sharia Law. Specifically, she has been Lead Counsel to all cases, thus far, of women who have been sentenced to death by stoning for allegedly having committed adultery.Ms. Ibrahim's objective for her Humphrey Fellowship year is to acquire skills to help her contribute to the development of a culture of Human Rights and Rule of Law in Nigeria.

   

Gaston Mwenelupembe presently holds the position of the Deputy Chief State Advocate for the Ministry of Justice in Blantyre Malawi, where he prosecutes criminal cases in Courts of Law, gives legal advice to the Police, and supervises junior prosecutors in their work. As a Humphrey Fellow, Mr. Mwenelupembe would like to learn and observe how matters of fraud, money laundering and corruption are handled, as well as to pursue course work in American legislation and legal writing pertaining to these issues.

   

Michael Njong is the Coordinator of Human Rights and Teacher of English for the Projet de Promotion Humain in Maroua, Cameroon. There, he manages all human rights activities within the organization, conducting human rights sensitization seminars and working with stakeholders, such as traditional rulers and law enforcement agents, to promote fundamental rights of citizens. During his Humphrey year, Mr. Njong hopes to gain skills necessary to provide an effective orientation framework within his organization in order to implement policy change.

   

Velephi Riba works as a Project Officer heading the United Nations Children's Fund's Policy and Advocacy Section in Mbabane, Swaziland. In this position, she helps to provide direction and technical guidance to national level institutions in order to strengthen policy making and legal reform processes in the protection of children's rights. As a Humphrey Fellow, Ms. Riba plans to gain academic and professional training on the design and preparation of tools for conducting a systematic audit of legal, policy and judicial structures so they are compatible with the protection of human rights.

   

Ahmad Warraich is the Deputy Director of the Human Rights Wing of the Ministry of Law, Justice and Human Rights in Pakistan, where he monitors the human rights situation on behalf of the Federal Government. Mr. Warraich's responsibilities include liaising with Human Rights non governmental organizations and the Provincial Government, overseeing mass awareness projects, and dealing with reports of human rights violations. During his year as a Humphrey Fellow, Mr. Warraich would like to further his knowledge on how human rights mechanisms work at all levels of government in the United States with the hope of adapting similar methods in Pakistan.

   

Roseline Zigomo is a Partner in the law firm of Atherstone and Cook, located in Harere, Zimbabwe. There, she is involved in litigation including human rights advocacy in the area of Constitutional rights and freedoms. Ms. Zigomo is a member of the Zimbabwe Lawyers for Human Rights and the Rotary Club of the Msasa District 9210 where she served as Community Services Director from 2000-2001. As a Humphrey Fellow, Ms. Zigomo hopes to study the constitutional framework of democratic governments and the global protection of human rights.