Governance, Rule of Law and Human Rights

Helping to achieve sustainable development and economic success through improved governance

IOL

Rule of Law Services

“The BWL Rule of Law Team – offering the proven BWL Rule of Law Formula to States seeking to achieve sustainable development and economic success through improved governance.”

Establishing respect for the rule of law is, according to the United Nations, “fundamental to achieving peace in the aftermath of conflict, to the effective protection of human rights and to sustained economic progress and development.” The BWL Rule of Law Team (“the Team”), comprising established Rule of Law experts, not only supports this view, but thinks that respect for and adherence to the Rule of Law is essential to overcome the problems encountered in post disaster situations and in situations in which a State’s governance has been effectively undermined by corruption. The Rule of Law is the very basis of a civilised society and there can be no sustainable development or long-term economic improvement in its absence.

As experienced Rule of Law professionals, the Team holds firmly to the view that the Rule of Law is a principle of governance, but that its critical feature is that individual liberties depend upon it. The late Tom Bingham, former Lord Chief Justice of England and Wales, thought rightly that the essence of the Rule of Law is that “all persons and authorities within the state, whether public or private, should be bound by and entitled to the benefits of laws publicly made […] and publically administered in the courts.” Whilst we agree with Justice Bingham’s view, the Team approaches the Rule of Law and practises on the basis that the principle comprises the following four core elements:

  1. all within a State are accountable to the law, including the Head of State and the State itself;
  2. all laws must be consistent with established international human rights standards;
  3. laws must be accessible by all, equally enforceable and publically promulgated; and
  4. laws must be adjudicated in public in a timely manner by suitably qualified and independent judges. The operation of the Rule of Law is an anathema to dictators and tyrants, for it defeats totalitarianism, oppression and injustice.

In Phase 1 of the BWL Rule of Law Formula (“the RLF”), the Team would – following research visits to the client country – devise and present a comprehensive Exemplifying Rule of Law Plan for the requesting State that will in essence suggest viable solutions to identified problems. Traditionally, such a plan covers areas such as fundamental rights, including human rights and international humanitarian law issues (on IHL issues contract the BWL IHL Team); civil, criminal and informal justice systems that embrace varied legal traditions (e.g., the implementation of recognised human rights regimes within Sharia legal systems); access to justice; the development of an independent legal profession, including the establishment of a trained and independent judiciary; open government; anti-corruption; regulatory enforcement across various sectors, such as the business and economic sector; and law and order, including policing, anti-terrorism, anti-money laundering, cyber security, prosecution and detention. In Phase 2, the Team will seek to assist the State with Plan Implementation, either comprehensive or targeted and inclusive of training (e.g., anti-corruption, anti-money laundering or IHL specific training to armed forces (on IHL issues contract The BWL IHL team)). In Phase 3, the Team will, if required, ensure BWL Implanted Legal Support in the short to long term within ministries and other state institutions, such as Human Rights Commissions established pursuant to the plan and its implementation.

The Team is headed by Lee Marler; a BWL barrister with extensive Rule of Law experience spanning over twenty years and it is supported by Rule of Law Confrères drawn from those lawyers and advocates internationally that are known to and trusted by the Team.  States or other entities interested in learning more about the work of the BWL Rule of Law Team should contact Lee directly.