Institute for Justice and Democracy in Haiti

Listen to the BAI’s Mario Joseph Straight from the World Justice Forum in Barcelona, Spain (IJDH-BAI)

The Bureau des Avo­cats Inter­na­tionaux (BAI) Managing Attorney Mario Joseph gives an introduction in Creole to the series of audio record­ings that IJDH’s and its Hait­ian affil­i­ate the Bureau des Avo­cats Inter­na­tionaux (BAI)‘s staff will pro­duce that talk about their work for jus­tice in Haiti. An English transcript of Mario’s recording is provided below as well.

In this record­ing, Mario talks from the World Jus­tice Forum about the practical application and affect rule of law can have on a country like Haiti and the positive experience participating in the conference has been. The con­fer­ence, brings together 450 diverse lead­ers — from for­mer heads of state and Supreme Court jus­tices, to med­ical doc­tors, school­teach­ers, engi­neers, busi­ness own­ers and artists — to pro­mote devel­op­ment of projects and the advance­ment of the rule of law across dis­ci­plines. It is Mario’s third time participating

Mario has managed or co-managed the BAI since 1993, spearheading many human rights cases including the Raboteau Massacre trial in 2000.  Named Haiti’s most respected human rights lawyer by the New York Times, Mario has served on the Haitian government’s Law Reform Commission and testified as an expert on Haitian criminal procedure before the Inter-American Court of Human Rights.

Audio from Mario Joseph, managing attorney at the BAI

English Translation of Mario Joseph’s Talk

I am Mario Joseph; I am Director or Manager for Bureau des Avocats International (BAI).

Now I am attending the World Justice Forum. It is my second time that I am taking part in forums here that talk about the “Rule of Law.”  The first time I took part in the conference it was in Brazil.

This year I have more comprehension of how to work and help the rule of law be implemented in Haiti. In Haiti, this is what is missing particularly. What I mean by that — during these days I am learning many things to help apply the rule of law.

That is missing in all aspects of activities in Haiti.  Either in governance or elections or women’s issues or children issues, in everything related to our lives. We don’t apply the rule of law, which means no respect of laws.

You can see in the prison many people who should not be there but they spend a lot of time there because the rule of law is not applied.

There are many other situations – education, or gender relations (relations between men and women) situations based on emotions and do not always respect the rule of law.

In the governance, more often the rule of law is not applied because the government does not either know all of their duties or the citizens do not their roles. You could see the recent situation in Haiti, such as in the displacement camp how a mayor evicted people in the camp without any warning or summoning them; he did it without any regard to any compliance with laws.

So I think at this forum I learned a lot of things that when I come back to Haiti will enable my in the prison, with women who are victims, those who are raped, in order to facilitate the advancement of the rule of law, especially in the elections and how the voting process is being held and respected in terms of the publication of the results. And how the rule of law should be respected in the democratic life in Haiti with the objective to establish a state of law in Haiti.

I am very glad I was in Barcelona at the third World Justice Forum.  I have gained more knowledge to share with my colleagues, Human rights organizations and Lawyers in Haiti that are involved in the activities we are doing at BAI.

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