TuksLaw trains International School Moot Court champions

Posted on February 17, 2016

On 22 January 2016, TuksLaw student and moot court participant, Gift Kgomosotho, reported from The Hague that he was delighted to announce that Team South Africa had won the 2016 International Schools Moot Court Competition (NSMCC). ‘In the final round at the Peace Palace this morning, we argued on behalf of the defendant against a team from New York City. The presiding international judges were unanimous in declaring Team South Africa the winners.’

The South African team consisted of learners Katelyn Chetty, Clara-Marie Macheke, Nthabiseng Mbatha, Simon Motsheweni, Claire Rankin, Paseka Selinyane, Shandre Smith and Mandisa Xaba from rural and former model C schools. They participated in the finals of the South African National Schools Moot Court Competition hosted by the University of Pretoria, which culminated at the Constitutional Court on 11 October 2015. Team SA's Clara-Marie Macheke (Springfield Convent), Claire Rankin (Springfield Convent) and Shandre Smith (Gibson Pillay Learning Academy) were announced as the winners. The twelve countries that participated in the competition are Argentina, Bulgaria, Germany, Mongolia, the Netherlands, Poland, Romania, Russia, St Martens, South Africa, Venezuela and the USA.

The Justice Resource Centre, in cooperation with the City Hall of The Hague, were responsible for coordinating the ISMCC. This year’s case dealt with war crimes and crimes against humanity in the fictitious country of Cheketalo. Learners participated in multiple-elimination rounds at Leiden University Law School from 18 to 22 January 2016. The South African team participated in eight preliminary rounds after which Team South Africa, represented by Clara-Marie Macheke, Claire Rankin and Shandre Smith, progressed to the final round against a team from New York. The final round was hosted at the Peace Palace in The Hague, often referred to as the seat of international law.

A number of TuksLaw students trained and prepared the learners during a four-day workshop.  The learners convened in Pretoria before their departure for the international competition where students Stephen Buabeng-Baidoo, Nyembeni Dhavana and Tinotenda Kakora coached them. Gift Kgomosotho acted as National Co-ordinator, Coach and Chairperson for the competition.

Gift participated in the NSMCC in 2009 and believes that his involvement in moot courts have had a positive effect on his decision to pursue a career in law. ‘We also had Rohula Bilankulu joining us for the training sessions. Rohula won the National Schools Moot Court Competition in 2012 and is enrolled to start his legal studies at UP this year. It is inspiring to see past moot court participants return and contribute to the development of the process. Even more impressive is witnessing the positive effect that the South African Schools Moot Court Competition has had on their decision to study law.’

The South African National Schools Moot Court Competition is organised by the Department of Basic Education, the Department of Justice and Constitutional Development and the University of Pretoria. It is also supported by the University of Venda, independent law firms and non-governmental organisations and funded by the Foundation for Human Rights.


Below: Five of the eight member team: Simon Motshweni, Mandisa Xaba, Clara-Marie Macheke, Claire Rankin and Paseka Selinyana.  Below: TuksLaw's student coaches:  Front fltr: Stephen Buabeng-Baidoo, Gift Kgomosotho, Sewela Masie.  Back:  Tinotenda Kakora and Nyambeni Dhavana. 
















Media coverage:


- Author Elzet Hurter / Gift Kgomosotho / TuksLaw Moot Society

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