- The demand of the Prosecutor of the International Criminal Court that any investigation by the Independent Oversight Mechanism into alleged misconduct of his staff members requires his prior authorization is not unreasonable or far-fetched
- Los Angeles, CA: ICC Forum
- Document type
- Web publication/site
- Media of output
- Faculty of Law (FdR)
- Amsterdam Center for International Law (ACIL)
Article 112, section 4 of the Rome Statute empowers the Assembly to establish "such subsidiary bodies as may be necessary, including an independent oversight mechanism for inspection, evaluation and investigation of the Court, in order to enhance its efficiency and economy." Recent proposals to establish an Independent Oversight Mechanism with powers to investigate alleged misconduct of staff members of the Office of the Prosecutor have provoked controversies between the Prosecutor’s Office and the Assembly of States. The major bone of contention has been whether the IOM should have the power to start investigations into the misconduct of staff members of the Office of the Prosecutor, without prior authorization of the Prosecutor. The Prosecutor’s Office has vigorously defended the need for such prior authorization. The demand of the Prosecutor is primarily fueled by the fear that investigations might interfere with the Prosecutor’s Office independence.
The latest Draft Resolution of the Assembly of States parties, though more forthcoming towards the Prosecutor’s qualms, does not fully accommodate the latter’s wish that his authorization is required before an investigation can proceed. The present author, however, agrees with the Prosecutor that the requirement of prior authorization fits the current system of dual accountability: staff members are accountable to the Prosecutor, while the Prosecutor is accountable to the Assembly of States Parties. If the Prosecutor were to obstruct unreasonably investigations by the IOM, his accountability towards the ASP could come into question. In this way, the Assembly can exercise control over a Prosecutor who is adamant to co-operate with an investigation into well-founded allegations.
- In: The oversight issue: What is the proper balance between the independence of the International Criminal Court and the oversight role of the Assembly of States Parties regarding the Court's administration under Article 112 of the Rome Statute?
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