This has come through the signing of two memoranda of understanding (MoUs) between the two institutions.
One MoU provides for the UniSey to offer a vocational bar course and bar examinations while the other will permit the production and publication of more secondary legal materials through the Seychelles Legal Information Institute (Seylii).
The signing ceremony took place yesterday morning at the Palais de Justice. Chief Justice Mathilda Twomey signed on behalf of the judiciary while vice-chancellor Denis Hardy signed for the university. Also present were judges and lawyers as well as deans of the different UniSey faculties and other judiciary and university staff.
Chief Justice Twomey, who expressed her passion for high quality legal education and its role in promoting a culture of strong and considered justice in Seychelles, has described the MoU signing as “just the start of a process of cooperation” between the two parties.
She added that she considers the two MoUs as very important in driving forward legal education in Seychelles, as the first will provide specialist training for lawyers before they run the bar examination and the second will add high quality secondary sources of legal information to the Seylii website.
“This will allow us to enrich the Seychelles jurisprudence through encouraging legal debate and academic review. […] This will allow our lawyers to deepen their understanding of the laws of Seychelles, which are not taught in any other forum. Many of our lawyers are trained overseas, and even the locally trained lawyers do the University of London syllabus through UniSey,” the chief justice said, concluding that she is looking forward to the relationship that will develop between the UniSey and the Judiciary.
One of the first initiatives to be developed as part of this relationship will be a writing competition dedicated to the memory of the late Justice André Sauzier which was launched during yesterday’s ceremony.
A joint venture between UniSey and the Judiciary, the ‘André Sauzier Legal Writing Competition’ will be opened to law students and young lawyers. It aims at the promotion and dissemination of secondary interpretative legal materials which is hoped will increase the legal knowledge and access to justice in the Seychelles community.
Dr Marco Rizzi, head of law programme at the Faculty of Business and Law, agreed with Justice Twomey that the cooperation will be useful to the Judiciary and will permit to have good Seychellois lawyers who have been trained in Seychelles.
“Both agreements are really important. They will help prospective lawyers get a better education. We already have good lawyers but they have all been trained abroad. We will now also have good locally trained ones. Seylii already provides information to lawyers via its website. The agreement will now permit not only the publication of judgments, but also comments and analysis from the legal community. As for the competition, it will encourage young lawyers not only to practice law but also to write about it,” he said.
There are currently about 60 law students at the UniSey, of which 23 have started their studies this year.
Source : Seychelles NATION