The African Legal Information Institute (AfricanLII) and the Southern Africa Legal Information Institute (SAFLII) last week announced the Free Access to Law in Africa (FALA) Awards. The awards are instituted in recognition of actors whose support for access to law enhance value for legal information, while also expanding the frontiers of free access to legal information in Africa. Juta was the key sponsor of this event which drew the Lii’s from around Africa to discuss strategies for future collaboration to meet their mandates. In his opening speech, policy and advocacy lead Oluwatoyin Badejogbin said AfricanLII and Saflii are focused on facilitating unhindered access to legal information, but there is a complex context to these efforts that is often overlooked. 'The same applies to all the legal information institutes that are gathered here. We all work within a context that could make or mar, or stultify the highly beneficial social value that we bring to society, as has often been the case. Typically, it is the politics surrounding access to information that readily springs to mind when we talk about the context of our work – the pervasive lack of attention that policy makers pay to the citizen’s right to access information. In the more pertinent legal context, it is the tendency of policy makers to prioritise other developmental programmes, to only see the relevance of courts and the law when the exercise of public power is being challenged,' he said.
By Carmel Rickard
Cape Town — Twenty African High Court judges have had a taste of South Africa's complex political reality: their human rights training course was hurriedly moved after student protests closed the University of Cape Town (UCT) campus.
The judges, in South Africa to examine how to apply international human rights law in appropriate decisions, came from 10 different African countries for the event, presented by the UCT-based Judicial Institute for Africa (Jifa).
Though they should have met for their discussions in the law faculty's Kramer building, organisers moved the workshop off campus for the first few days due to the continuing protests that saw the campus, like others in South Africa, closed for classes.
In the course of the workshop, the judges were thrown even further into the South African situation by the hypothetical cases they were asked to consider, several of which related directly to dramatic events unfolding in the host country.
On 14 July 2016 the Judicial Service Commission (JSC) published notices in the media calling for nominations of interested persons to fill 19 vacancies in the various superior courts including the Constitutional Court. The closing date for submission of nominations was set for 05 August 2016. On 27 August 2016, the JSC met and compiled a short list of candidates to be interviewed at its sitting to be held in Cape Town on 03-07 October 2016 as follows:
Read the results of the high level vetting exercise of the 62 nominations/applications received for the position of Public Protector. This vetting exercise was conducted by Corruption Watch and the Democratic Governance and Rights Unit.