Mozambique, Kenya and Pakistan show the way for justice and human rights

Mozambique, Kenya and Pakistan show the way for justice and human rights

HiiL has presented its annual awards.

  • The Award for Innovative Ideas was won by "TV show resolves labour conflict" represented by Ernesto Martinho (Mozambique).
  • The Award for Successful Innovation was won by "Open source web application for information collection, visualisation and interactive mapping", represented by Gregory Omondi (Kenya).
  • The Human Rights Tulip was won by "Protecting reproductive health and rights", represented by Sheena Hadi (Pakistan).

At the ceremony, HiiL Director Sam Muller said: "I am always inspired seeing how much amazing, quality work is happening all around the world to make justice better. We had a record-breaking 93 entries for this year's competition. The calibre of innovations was so high that choosing nine finalists and then three winners was tough - but at the same time exhilarating when so much good work is happening in so many countries. This year it was an additional privilege to work closely with the Ministry of Foreign Affairs on the Human Rights Tulip. Minister Timmermans and his colleagues deserve particular thanks for promoting the people who are doing such great efforts in the field of human rights. Such collaborations are truly making the future a better place."

TV show resolves labour conflict

Mobile Judge uses the Mozambique media as an effective extra-legal and informal mechanism for disputes in the workplace. In that country, the power of media is overwhelming. 'Mobile Judge' uses national TV, research and negotiation techniques, bringing parties with conflicting interests to a common understanding within the shortest period of time. 'Mobile Judge' also supports those in need with free counselling and referral to the formal judiciary.

Ernesto Martinho, Mobile Judge TV presenter said "Using national media has been key to Mobile Judge's success but it cannot be overemphasized how free counselling is the basic prerequisite for the success of the entire trial process. The Mobile Judge is the working peoples' problem solver."

Open source web application

Ushahidi Platform collects information from SMS, Twitter, RSS feeds and email. It helps a user to process it, categorise it, geolocate it and publish it on a map. Ushahidi platform was born out of the violence that broke out after the disputed 2007 general elections. More than 1500 people were killed, with more than half a million being displaced. Mainstream media was unable to report what was happening on the ground, and the government was trying to downplay the severity of the situation.

Gregory Omondi from Ushahidi explained: "Five local bloggers built a platform where Kenyans could share stories of human rights violations directly from mobile phones and the web. This allowed people to find out what was happening to them and in the rest of the country - effectively giving them a voice when no one else could, or would."

Protecting reproductive health and rights

In Pakistan, where religious and cultural norms hinder individuals from communicating on sexual and reproductive health issues, an organisation called Aahung has been successful in developing culturally-appropriate strategies for the population. It has adopted a rights-based approach to address the sexual and reproductive health needs of Pakistanis, advocating for increased access to quality information and services. In addition, Aahung advocates for improving laws and policies and hold the government accountable to national and international commitments in this area.

Sheena Hadi from Aahung said: "We been able to significantly increase access to quality education and services for sexual health and rights by developing links with both institutions and the community. Working with primary and secondary teachers has resulted in youth becoming more aware of issues such as puberty and body protection, while developing key life skills that will enable them to make informed choices and decisions."

Frans Timmermans, Netherlands Foreign Minister said "Aahung owes its success to the ability to give human rights a face"

Trialogue

The awards ceremony concluded a ground-breaking two-day meeting where 150 people from different backgrounds - judges, court administrators, legislators, parliamentarians, civil society representatives, academics, social entrepreneurs and funders - gathered together to discuss justice innovation with a special focus on courts.

At the meeting, HiiL presented its new Trend Report: "Trialogue - releasing the value of courts". It shows how courts are important as ever, but also under pressure as never before. It points the way forward - how procedures will adapt and evolve; how innovation drives improvement.

HiiL provides a unique, world-class platform comprising a community of justice innovators , rule of law leaders, justice experts and potential funders in order to valuate, stimulate and reward justice innovation.