Contents: Preface, William A. Schabas; General introduction; The death penalty: ideas and practice in pre-colonial Africa; The death penalty during the period of peaceful legal influences in Africa; The death penalty as a colonial policy in Africa; The death penalty as a political instrument in Africa; Concluding remarks on de facto abolition in Africa; Appendix; Bibliography; Index.
Dr Aime Muyoboke Karimunda is Senior Lecturer at the School of Law of the University of Rwanda, Advisor to the Deputy Chief Justice of Rwanda and Visiting Lecturer for the Institute of Legal Practice and Development (ILPD). He previously was Lecturer and Dean of the Faculty of Law at the Kigali Independent University (from 2003-2012). He has also been a member of the Rwandan High Judicial Council (from 2007 to 2010) and Legal Advisor to the Minister of Health between 2001 and 2003.
'While countries in North America and Asia who claim to provide moral leadership to the world still strangle and poison to death people on judicial order, nearly three quarters of African countries have either by law or in practice abolished capital punishment. This comprehensively researched and critically engaged book explains the historical context in which abolition in Africa has advanced.' Hon. Justice Albie Sachs, Former Constitutional Judge of the South African Constitutional Court 'This is the most comprehensive and analytical study on the death penalty in Africa so far. It is both useful and inspiring, and should be read by all scholars and activists interested in the abolition of the death penalty in Africa and around the world.' Jean-Marie Kamatali, Ohio Northern University Law School, USA 'The Death Penalty in Africa presents another valuable contribution from African scholarship. The work challenges stereotypes by showing Africa as a highly diverse continent, and arguing for the uncomfortable truth of how for a century the death penalty has been used as an instrument of political oppression.' Roelof H. Haveman, senior rule of law policy advisor, Ministry of Foreign Affairs, The Netherlands 'This seminal work interrogates a few myths surrounding the origins of capital punishment on the African continent. It goes further in providing empirical evidence for its leaders to revisit their stance against abolition. This work constitutes a major contribution to human rights, not just for Africa but internationally.' Vinodh Jaichand, University of the Witwatersrand, Johannesburg, South Africa 'This study provides a balanced approach to the abolition of the death penalty in Africa. It presents a very important and commendable study not only for the African Commission for Human and People's Rights and its Working Group on the death penalty, but also to African civil society, academics, researchers and decision-makers whose fight is, among other things, to abolish the death penalty on the continent.' Zainabo Sylvie Kayitesi, Chairperson of the African Commission for Human and People's Rights and Chairperson of the Working Group on the death penalty in Africa '... the greatest feat of Karimunda's book is his broad continental-historical perspective on the death penalty from antiquity to the present. The final chapter brings his analysis to the present period, including the recent abolition of the death penalty in countries like Gabon and Benin.' Criminal Law & Criminal Justice Books