Senior legal officer at iPeace-Rwanda

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Application Deadline 28 February 2020

Duration of contract 12 months (extendable)

Posting Location Kigali / Rwanda

Applications to be sent to


Initiatives for Peace and Human Rights (iPeace) is a Rwanda-based non-governmental organization that strives to enhance the culture of peace in the Great Lakes region through human rights and good governance education.

Initiatives for Peace and Human Rights has been providing free legal services to vulnerable people living in remote rural areas in 5 districts (Huye, Nyaruguru, Nyamagabe, Gisagara, and Nyanza). In 2020, the organization intends to intensify its intervention through multiple mobile legal aid services, and to start regular publication of research-papers, policy briefs and position papers on most recurrent issues. For this to happen, there a strong need for a qualified staff with legal background to be appointed as Senior Legal Officer (SLO).

As a senior manager, the SLO will have the opportunity to make strategic and significant contributions across a range of areas including technical duties, advocacy, managerial and related administrative functions. The SLO reports directly to the Country Director (CD) and is a member of the Management Team.


Duties and responsibilities of the successful senior legal officer are described below:

Legal Programme:

• Coordinate and manage the legal aid projects, including monitoring of key developments in relation to proceedings, cases and decisions with a particular focus on situations and cases involving SGBV crimes and land-related disputes.

• Coordinate and oversee the development of strategic legal publications including documentation relevant cases and production thereof in the Legal Aid Newsletter

• Coordinate the drafting of public statements, web briefs and blogs as well as other advocacy and communication tools.

• Oversee implementation of selected legal projects and coordinate the research for expert papers, in conjunction with the CD.

• Coordinate and oversee legal research and analysis to generate the legal requests, amicus briefs and other submissions, in conjunction with the CD.

• Supervise and ensure that legal officers duties related to hearing, filing, drafting and following up cases in IECMS is done adequately and timely.

• Contribute to and engage with campaigns, advocacy programmes and related strategies undertaken that serve the overall mandate of the organisation.

• Contribute to the integration of the rights-based approach in the organisation’s strategies and programmes

• Provide support for in-country programmes, partners, events and workshops, as requested.

External Relations

• Contribute to the relevant Monitoring and Evaluation reporting streams.

• Support the representation and advocacy agenda of iPeace in networks of which the organisation is a member, as well as at selected conferences and venues as relevant.

• Participate in and contribute to trainings, professional group meetings and other meetings in the partner network of iPeace and the Rights-based Program

• Serve as liaison between iPeace and GIZ

• Provide well-developed material on the progress and activities of the legal team for Board reports as well as donor reports and funding proposals.


• Manage and provide coaching for the Legal Officer, Associate Legal Officer, and legal interns as well as the implementation of annual staff performance appraisals and the identification of staff development needs and opportunities.

• Coordinate, oversee and assess the work of externally-based legal monitors.

• Manage legal team meetings, monitor implementation of individual and team work plans.

• Participate in the evaluation, strategic planning and priority setting processes of the organization.

• Coordinate, with the CD and relevant staff, legal team recruitments, including ongoing structural analysis/change management and implications for the legal team.


Qualifications and experience below are required from any candidate:

• Bachelor’s degree in Law required and advanced university degree preferred, with at least 3 years of professional experience relevant to this post among the following areas: provision of legal aid services in remote rural areas, domestic or international criminal law, international humanitarian law, or international human rights law.

• Extensive experience working in Rwanda including within legal institutions, as well as experience working in the NGO sector.

• Demonstrated management skills with significant experience in a mid-to-senior level management position.

• Advanced advocacy skills and experience identifying and crafting advocacy messages and
strategies relevant to this post.

• Strong awareness of and commitment to legal needs of vulnerable people.

• Excellent integrated communication skills: spoken/representation and effective inter-personal skills with the proven ability to establish and maintain positive working relationships across diverse partnerships, colleagues and actors.

• Extremely attentive to accuracy and detail, highly organized with demonstrated ability to work well under pressure regarding deadlines, workload and unexpected developments.

• Ability, willingness and flexibility to travel in remote rural areas in difficult conditions and respond to a range of environments.

• Highly advanced computer literacy skills, experience with social media also an asset.

• Excellence in written and spoken English and Kinyarwanda is essential. Knowledge of French would be considered an asset.

• Developed legal research, writing and editorial skills with experience in developing high quality material suitable for publication.

iPeace invites qualified candidates to apply for this position by providing the following as one single PDF attachment:

(a) A one-page motivation letter

(b) Most updated Curriculum Vitae highlighting key qualifications for the job (2 pages max) with two references preferably most recent employers/supervisors (emails and phone numbers)

(c) Notarized copy of the most qualifying degree/certificateApplications must be sent electronically to no later than 28 February 2020 at 5:00 pm local time (Kigali – Rwanda) and specifically mentioning “Senior Legal Officer – Rwanda” in the subject. Short-listed candidates will be invited for an interview at iPeace-Rwanda office.

No phone calls accepted.Applications from female candidates are highly encouraged.


iPeace is proud to be an Equal Employment and Opportunity and Affirmative Action Employer. We do not discriminate based upon race, religion, color, national origin, gender (including pregnancy, childbirth, or related medical conditions), gender identity, age, status as individual with a disability, or other applicable legally protected characteristics. All employment is decided on the basis of qualifications, merit, competence, and result-delivery need.

iPeace conducts its activities professionally, with integrity and in compliance with laws of those jurisdictions. As part of its commitment to ethical practices, iPeace does not tolerate acts of bribery or corruption. No person, agent or organization has been mandated by iPeace to receive, orient or facilitate any job application nor is there any fee whatsoever to submit, review, or assess a job application. Any promise/threat by whoever to positively or negatively influence a job application process is null and void.