Friday, September 18, 2009

As Lance says, "It's not about the bike"

Life around here isn't just about cars, cute kids and Twitterings. Some of us are working hard to keep us fed, clothed and sheltered. Here is a peek at what keeps Roger busy most days and how he is adjusting to life off the bike. And please be sure to direct the Pulitzer Prize nominating committee to this stellar piece of investigative journalism!

What are your responsibilities at the Tribunal?

I am assisting in the drafting of the Judgement in Prosecutor v. Nyiramasuhuko et al., involving six defendants accused of genocide and crimes against humanity taking place in Butare prefecture in Rwanda in 1994.

Where are the judges on your panel from?

The three Judges on the panel are from Tanzania, Uganda and Madagascar

How many judgments are pending? Are there any fugitives outstanding?

There are ten cases either at trial or in the judgment-writing phase. There are five detained defendants and thirteen accused still at large. Although one fugitive was just captured a few weeks ago in Congo-Kinshasa and is awaiting extradition to the ICTR in Arusha.

What is it like to work for the UN? What is the most rewarding part?

It is incredible to work with such a diverse group of accomplished individuals. You never know who you'll run into in the corridors or what kind of amazing work they have done in the past.

Where do your coworkers come from?

There are people from all over Africa, Europe, the U.S. and Australia. The people on my team are from Uganda, Madagascar, England, Scotland and the U.S.

Where and what do you eat for lunch every day?

I eat almost every day at a cantina we call "immigration" since it is next to the government immigration office. It is very much a local establishment! A typical lunch consists of brown rice, beans, local spinach, cabbage and a healthy dose of pilipili (hot sauce). All for about $1. $1.50 if you get a soda!

What is the "cycling community" like in Arusha?

Cyclists around here are crazy! They ride around on 50lb Phoenix bicycles with wrought iron racks welded on to the back to carry ____________ (insert anything here, like person, 200lbs of rice, crates of beer, and one time a sofa love seat - no joke on the sofa!). They certainly take more risks than I am willing to.

Do you miss biking?

I am starting to miss it, but I wouldn't ride my bike around here on the roads. The daladalas (local transportation) pull in and out of traffic without looking, the motorbikes speed past in any gap and the semi's don't brake or divert for anyone. The backroads are becoming more tantalizing and I'm thinking of picking up a local mountain bike to get my fix in. Running has been my go to exercise at the moment.

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