New NGO to Focus on Justice

On his most recent trip to Zambia, Nick Kahn-Fogel not only completed work on several research articles, he helped form a non-governmental organization (NGO) designed to address issues with access to justice in the small country.

Working with Zambian attorneys, the friends formed the organization to provide more and better legal aid services for the thousands of prisoners awaiting preliminary hearings (remand prisoners).

Nicholas Kahn-Fogel“One-third of the prisoners in Zambian jail have not had trials,” Kahn-Fogel said. “This is a direct result of the inadequate numbers of attorneys in the country.”

The group will work to enhance the quality of representation for those remand prisoners and to enhance with efficiency with which courts process their cases. In effect, this NGO would help increase the availability of services for those most in need, providing access to justice to more Zambians than ever.

“We also hope to address the lack of resources in the justice system through the use of more paralegals and learner attorneys who work in clinics. These young lawyers-in-training can gain practical experience while helping their countrymen find access to justice.”

Professor Nick Kahn-Fogel poses for a photo with students from the law school at the University of Zambia.Members of the group are currently writing grant proposals in order to secure funding for their work. While Kahn-Fogel was in Africa, they conducted meetings with the various groups of stakeholders within the government and legal community, seeking their advice on the best way to organize the program in order to benefit the individuals who still await trial in Zambian courts.

Kahn-Fogel estimates that the venture will need approximately $1.5 million in seed money to become established.

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