Mak Wins The All-Africa 2018

Makerere University’s School of Law emerged winners of the 27th Africa Human Rights Moot Court Competition held in Accra Ghana from the 6th to 11th of August 2018.The School of Law was represented by a team of three comprising two students; Gulam Hussein Dawood and Muhawe Ruth, together with one faculty representative; Dr. Daniel Ruhewza. 

The competition this year attracted a total of 42 universities from across the continent, and the students were tasked with arguing a hypothetical case before the regional African Court on Human and Peoples’ Rights. The case necessitates a deep interaction with pertinent human rights issues affecting the present-day populations of African countries, and this year’s theme was the right to self-determination, alongside the rights of women in Africa. 

Uganda was represented by two other institutions: Uganda Christian University and Kampala International University. The program commenced on the 6th to the 11th of August and was hosted by University of Ghana-Legon at Accra, Ghana. The opening ceremony was graced by H.E Nana Akufo-Ado, President of Ghana.

 All teams first took part in preliminary rounds, where Makerere University emerged 2nd in the rank of Top 10 after the University of Ghana. The top 6 teams then progressed to the final round split into two sides; the Applicant team comprising University of Ghana and University of Nairobi, together with a university from Mozambique, against the Respondent team comprising Makerere University and University of Pretoria, together with a University from Ivory Coast. 

The final rounds were held at the Auditorium of the Ghana Court Complex, and were adjudicated by a team of human rights experts from around the world including persons that have served at the European and Inter-American Commission for Human Rights. The presiding Judge was Her Ladyship Sophia Akuffo, Chief Justice of Ghana and former President of the African Court at Arusha. 

After a one- hour session of arguments and another hour of deliberations, the Respondent team was announced winner of the round by a 7-point margin. As such, all the respective universities on the team, including Makerere University, were awarded as winners of this year’s competition, while those on the Applicant team were awarded as runners-up. 

Recognition was also given to the Top 10 best oralists in the competition, where Hussein and Ruth emerged 2nd and 3rd best oralists respectively. All members of winning and runner-up teams were given plaques for their achievement, while all students and faculty representatives were given certificates of participation for their attendance and effort. Next year’s competition will be held in Botswana, and all law-teaching universities are encouraged to participate.

In his remarks following the win, the Principal School of Law commended the Public interest Law Clinic for enabling the School of Law to participate in the competitions annually and commended the team for raising the flag of Makerere University high.