Vacancy: Legal Officer

The Institute for Human Rights and Development in Africa (IHRDA) is seeking to recruit a Legal Officer with litigation, legal research and drafting skills, along with a knowledge of and familiarity with the African human rights system.

IHRDA is looking for a highly motivated individual who demonstrates professional competence and mastery of subject matter, while taking pride in work and in achievements, both at personal and organisational levels. The legal officer will be involved in the main programme areas of IHRDA, namely litigation, training on use of regional human rights mechanisms for a wide range of civil society actors, and publications. The Legal officer will also participate in programme planning, fund-raising, and reporting. His/her responsibilities will include:

Litigation, Legal Research and Drafting

  • Summarise and analyse evidentiary material to assess their relevance;
  • Prepare legal and factual submissions, draft briefs;
  • Litigate on behalf of IHRDA;
  • Identify suitable cases for litigation;
  • Conduct research using various research engines and sources.

Case information management and programme related duties

  • Maintain case files;
  • Draft case-related correspondence;
  • Liaise with different parties and stakeholders;
  • Implement aspects of IHRDA’s litigation and advocacy strategies.

Communication, networking and capacity-building

  • In conjunction with the Executive Director, represent IHRDA externally and carry out media work;
  • Network with relevant human rights NGOs;
  • Capacity building and training of local civil society partners and lawyers;
  • Contribute to IHRDA’s publications.

Organisation, logistics and administration

  • Assist in development and maintenance of good donor relations;
  • Supervise the work of interns and consultants;
  • Assist in planning and organising workshops, conferences and other events.

Person Specification

The ideal candidate will have:

  • Knowledge of the African Union, the African regional human rights system and Regional Economic Courts (RECs);
  • Experience with human rights work; experience in the field of economic, social and cultural rights and child rights is an added advantage;
  • Strong research and analysis skills;
  • Experience in brief writing and ability to draft accurately and concisely;
  • Ability to handle files from inception to completion, including document management and filing of processes;
  • Knowledge of non-litigation advocacy;
  • Ability to lead training sessions on the African human rights system;
  • Strong communication and interpersonal skills;
  • Strong organisational skills, with ability to multi-task and to proactively manage workload, while respecting tight deadlines;
  • Ability to identify potential solutions to legal and other problems and implement them;
  • Demonstrated ability to work well as part of a multi-cultural and multi-lingual team.

Qualifications, Language and Computer Skills

  • A degree in law from a recognised university, with specialisation in international human rights law highly desirable;
  • A legal practitioner’s qualification in one of the jurisdictions in Africa;
  • At least 3 years’ experience in litigation and/or human rights work at national level, regional exposure highly desirable;
  • Excellent writing, editing and speaking skills in English/or French and working knowledge of the other highly desirable;
  • Good computer skills and high comfort level with computer research and word processing skills.

Terms and Conditions

  • Competitive
  • A six-month probation period will be included in the contract.

How to Apply
Please send (in English or French) a Curriculum Vitae; a motivation letter, an unedited writing sample of 5 to 20 pages and a list three references who are not related to the candidate, with their full contact details.

Further information is available at www.ihrda.org or contact

Mr Musa Secka,

IHRDA,

PO Box 1896, Banjul, The Gambia.

Email: recruitment@ihrda.org , cc. msecka@ihrda.org

Issued: Dec 1 2011

Closing date: 15 January 2012

Interviews: End of February 2012

Expected start of work April 1 2012

Only shortlisted candidates will be contacted. IHRDA is committed to equal opportunities.  Women candidates are encouraged to apply.

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