Bamyan, or Bamian, is located in the center of the country. Its capital is also called Bamyan. Bamyan province lies on the highlands of Afghanistan and is bordered by the provinces of Sari Pul and Samangan in the north, Baghlan and Parwan in the east, Wardak and Ghazni in the south, Daykundi in the southwest, and Ghor in the west. The province covers an area of 17,414 square kilometers of mostly dry, mountainous terrain with a number of rivers, the largest being the Punjab. Nearly the whole entire province is mountainous or semi-mountainous, while only 1.8% of the area is made up of flat land. The province is divided into seven districts. The total population in 2008 was approximately 398,000. There are 55,513 households in the province, and households, on average, have seven members. Around 80% of the population lives in rural districts. The major ethnic groups living in Bamyan province are Hazara, followed by Tajik, Tatar, and Pashtun. Dari is spoken by 96% of the population.
Starting in 2011, JSSP offered Bamyan justice officials a comprehensive two-month legal training program titled “Advanced Continuing Legal Education for Afghanistan” (ACLEA) targeting judges, prosecutors, detectives and defense attorneys. The program taught basic legal knowledge and practical skills. In addition, the Bamyan Team executed follow-on select legal seminars (i.e., juvenile justice). All courses helped trainees perform their duties in a more competent, effective, and efficient manner. In addition, many of the trainees learned how to teach in JSSP’s Training of Trainers (TOT) program. TOT graduates are capable of teaching fellow co-workers within their departments. As part of its comprehensive Rule of Law efforts, JSSP staff provided follow-on mentoring to ensure that trainees could and did apply the knowledge they gained in class.
JSSP designed, developed and implemented ACLEA, which was a structured 240-hour training. The ACLEA course was designed to teach basic legal knowledge and practical skills. The Bamyan Team mentored Afghan judges, prosecutors, defense attorneys and CID officers.
Bamyan training statistics for ACLEA as of January 2013, when JSSP transferred the program to the International Development Law Organization:
Despite many challenges including justice sector corruption and security, JSSP succeeded in training 20 judges, 30 prosecutors, 19 CID officers and 5 defense attorneys. That training occurred in Bamyan City. JSSP trained some 31% of the legal and justice professionals in Bamyan region.
As represented in the following quote, JSSP efforts resulted in improvements to the Bamyan justice system:
“Just look at all the improvements we have made in less than a year . . . JSSP taught us the importance of open trials, advising suspects of their rights, holding trials consistent with the Constitution and the Penal Code and giving the community notice of our hearings – and JSSP’s mentoring support generates continuing opportunities to improve our system. Now we have a working system, a professional courtroom, open trials and the people are beginning to respect the judicial system.” Chief Judge, Public Security Appellate Court, Bamyan Province, Afghanistan, June 2012
In January 2013, the Bamyan JSSP Regional Team completed its operations. Over the past two years, JSSP has greatly impacted the justice sector in Bamyan and Daykundi provinces and made significant contributions to increasing the capacity of justice professionals through training and mentoring. JSSP operations were handed over to IDLO on 15 January 2013.