27th African human rights moot court competition launched

The 27th edition of the African Human Rights Moot Court Competition has been launched in Accra.

The all African human rights competition which is held every year would be hosted by the University of Ghana (UG) in August next year.

This would be the second time UG would be hosting the forum which is for African Human Rights Law students.

The competition is expected to bring into the country students and lecturers form over 75 law faculties from all over Africa.

Professor Kofi Quashigah, the Dean for the School of Law, UG, said the Human Rights Moot Court competition serves as a platform where African law students discuss and debate current human rights issues.

He said with the objective of inculcating in the students, at an early stage, the interest in human rights, the competition has also become a beacon of human rights for students in their respective countries.

Prof Quashigah said the competition which started as an initiative in Human Rights Centre of the University of Pretoria, South Africa, was initially limited to countries of the Southern Africa Region.

“Since 1996 when the Moot court was transformed from Southern Africa Regional Programme into an all African programme, the University of Ghana team has never failed to be represented.

“Indeed the University of Ghana School of Law has won a number of such events including the 2017 competition which was held last October in Mauritius,” he said.

Prof Quashigah said Ghana has had the privilege of hosting Moot court in 2000 in Accra where Ghana won as well.

He said apart from the Moot court’s educational value, it would also open up the country to students and lecturers from all over Africa.

Prof Frans Viljoen, the Director, Centre for Human Rights University of Pretoria, South Africa, said the Moot competition is an avenue where new generation of lawyers would be raised.

He lauded Ghana for being one of the few countries to be associated with the Moot competition on the continent.

Prof Ebenezer Oduro Owusu, the Vice-Chancellor of UG, said the University fully supported the decision to host the 2018 Moot competition.

“We at the University of Ghana do appreciate the importance of exposure of students to the real world outside the lecture rooms and I believe that the all African Human Rights competition which has been regularly organised for a decade would provide one such opportunity for students to debate on important human rights concerns affecting the continent,” he said.

Prof Oduro Owusu pledged the university’s assistance towards the facilitation of a smooth Moot Court programme next year. 

The one week programme would see students engaging in advocacy with each other at the preliminary stages, and at the end, the final Moot session would be held to determine winners.

A memorandum of understanding was signed between UG and the Centre of Human Rights University of Pretoria, South Africa to commence the execution plans towards the organization of the 2018 all African Human Rights Moot Court Competition.

Ms Keziah Hillary Engmann and Ms Aniela Allotey all level 300 students at the Human Rights Center UG would be representing Ghana in the competition next year.

In September this year, the maiden Moot Court competition for some selected Senior High Schools in Accra was held.

The 2017 pilot Moot saw St Thomas Aquinas Senior High School being adjudged as the overall winners.

Source: GNA

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