Woman Crush Wednesday (WCW): Fatou Bensouda

by Duke Magazine

Fatou Bom Bensouda is a Gambian prosecutor and legal adviser who has served as the International Criminal Court’s Chief Prosecutor since June 2012. She has a wealth of experience in the international judicial system, having served as Chief Legal Adviser to the President and Cabinet of The Republic of The Gambia, as well as working as a Legal Adviser and Trial Attorney at the International Criminal Tribunal for Rwanda in Tanzania.

Born in 1961, Bensouda graduated from the University of Ife (now Obafemi Awolowo University) with  Bachelors of Law (Hons) degree in 1986 and was called to bar at the Nigeria Law School a year after. In furtherance of her academic pursuit, she became Gambia’s first expert in international maritime law following her completion of masters of law from the International Maritime Law Institute in Malta.

For over three decades, Bensouda has been walking on the corridor of legal prosecution and advisory. Notable of which was her pivotal role in Gambian president Yahya Jammeh’s government in 1996 by championing an accelerated prosecution of offenses against women and children.

With a consensus choice, Bensouda was formally elected Prosecutor of the International Criminal Court (ICC). The 60-year-old legal practitioner has always been at the fore front of the fighting against abnormalities towards human rights, especially women. 

The mother of three is a recipient of many awards and recognitions for her remarkable contributions towards assuming a world sanctity through legal binding. Notable of these awards in her cart is the distinguished ICJ International Jurists Award presented to her by  then India president Pratibha Patil in 2009. Bensouda was revered for her contributions to criminal law both at the national and international level.

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