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Justice and Healing in Northern Uganda

Tuesday, October 21, 2008 (All day)

Time: 12.45pm-2pm


Venue: Lucas Room (LG 81), London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine (LSHTM), Keppel Street, London, WC1E 7HT


Speaker: Professor Tim Allen, Development Studies Institute (DESTIN), London School of Economics (LSE)

The involvement of the International Criminal Court in northern Uganda has been a matter of great controversy, not least among humanitarian aid agencies. A key line of argument against the court is that local justice is more appropriate and better. This has underpinned attempts to formalise traditional processes. There are similarities here with efforts to link local healers with the provision of basic health services. In practice, local healing and local justice overlap. What are the implications of promoting such strategies? Are they are as viable and as socially beneficial as proponents claim? The talk will suggest that much of the enthusiasm for traditional values and traditional ways among well-meaning outsiders is misplaced. It is based on fundamental misconceptions about what is happening, and may have counter-productive consequences.


Allen's recent publications include Trial Justice: The International Criminal Court and The Lord's Resistance Army (Zed Books 2006).