"Ladies and gentlemen, welcome back – you are tuned in to Radio Canal Révélation with the International Criminal Court. Nicolas Kuyaku, Outreach Assistant in Ituri, is with us in the studio to answer your questions and address your concerns."
"Thank you, Didine. As I do every last Friday of the month, I am going to talk to you about what's new at the Court. I will follow that up with the educational segment and today's subject is the different ways that a case can be brought before the Court."
These monthly radio programmes are one of the best parts of my job, because they help create a direct link between the people and the Court . The first part of the programme is dedicated to the latest news at the Court, followed by a segment in which we zoom in on a specific topic. The second part of the programme is reserved for listeners' questions. For 30 minutes, listeners can call or text in their questions. Questions come in from all four territories in the Ituri Province – Djugu, Irumu, Mahagi and Mambassa – but it's the communities in Djugu and Irumu who contribute most actively to the programme. Most questions concern DRC cases, though we also get some about cases in other situations, such as Libya, Kenya and Sudan. The host takes down all the questions.
First listener's call. I'm having a hard time hearing because the connection is bad. "Why did the ICC agree to reduce Katanga's sentence but not Lubanga's?"
The question was asked in Lingala, one of the languages spoken in this region. As a rule, the programme is in French, but when someone asks a question in Lingala, I answer in Lingala. It's one of the local languages that I speak fluently, so I'm comfortable doing that. If someone asks a question in Swahili, on the other hand, the host interprets for me. I don't speak Swahili, although I can say a few words, which Swahili-speaking listeners like to hear. "Habari, mina shukuru sana." Once the programme is over, the whole thing is translated into Lingala and Swahili.
I'm really proud to present this programme, because I have been able to build up a solid base of loyal listeners who encourage me to make sure the people of Ituri are kept up to date about what's happening in The Hague. The idea for an interactive programme was devised in partnership with the local station Radio Canal Révélation, and the programme is retransmitted in French, Lingala and Swahili on nine other stations in the Ituri Province. Thanks to this network of local radio stations, we are able to reach out to, inform and answer the questions of residents in this province – which is one and a half times the size of the Netherlands.