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Fatou Bensouda ranked 4th most influential African

Jan 7, 2011, 12:34 PM

Gambian-born Fatou Bom Bensouda has been listed as the 4th most influential African personality by Jeune Afrique, a French weekly magazine that presents news and editorial commentary on Africa, especially French-speaking African countries.

Mrs Bensouda, Deputy Prosecutor of the International Criminal Court (ICC) in The Hague, is among a list of 50 most influential African personalities listed by the magazine.

Among those included are former Senegalese President Abdou Diouf and CAF President Issa Hayatou of Cameroon.

Elected Deputy Prosecutor of the ICC on 8th September 2004 by the Assembly of States Parties, Mrs Bensouda is in charge of the Prosecution Division of the Office of the Prosecutor.

Prior to her election, Mrs. Bensouda worked as a Legal Adviser and Trial Attorney at the International Criminal Tribunal for Rwanda (ICTR) in Arusha, Tanzania, rising to the position of Senior Legal Advisor and Head of The Legal Advisory Unit.

Before joining the ICTR, she was the General Manager of a leading commercial bank in The Gambia. Between 1987 and 2000, she was successively Senior State Counsel, Principal State Counsel, Deputy Director of Public Prosecutions, Solicitor General and Legal Secretary of the Republic of The Gambia, then Attorney General and Minister of Justice, in which capacity she served as Chief Legal Advisor to the President and Cabinet.

Mrs Bensouda also took part in negotiations on the treaty of the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS), the West African Parliament and the ECOWAS Tribunal. She has been a delegate at United Nations' conferences on crime prevention, the Organization of African Unity’s Ministerial Meetings on Human Rights, and the delegate of the Gambia to the meetings of the Preparatory Commission for the International Criminal Court.

Mrs Bensouda holds a masters degree in International Maritime Law and Law of The Sea, and as such was the first international maritime law expert of The Gambia.