News & Events

Three more Unisa law clinics launched

Pictured is the head of the Unisa Law Clinic, Adv Kgagudi Morota, with Unisa Law Clinic staff members and representatives of various royal houses present at the Mpumalanga launch.

Headed by Advocate Kgagudi Morota, the Unisa Law Clinic expanded its footprint to three South African provinces to provide free quality legal aid and representation in any court of law, tribunal, or body before which a party with a legal dispute may be represented by a legal practitioner.

Three new Unisa Law Clinics opened in Polokwane, Mpumalanga and the Western Cape on 26 May, 1 July and 8 July 2022. The focus of this community engagement project is to also carry out the clinic’s projects to the students such as street law, moot court, student debate and practical legal training.

Offered on a yearly basis, these programmes bridge the gap between theory and practice. Moreover, these programmes provide pragmatic skills for Unisa law students, to be effective and competitive in the legal practice.

Adv Kgagudi Morota giving the main address at the Polokwane launch.

‘We strongly believe that the concept of the rule of law is meaningless until it signifies unlimited access to justice mostly to indigent members of the community,’ says Morota. He further explains that the project will provide basic legal education to community members in surrounding areas through their various community programmes. ‘We are quite aware that access to a mere basic education in this country is commercialised as indigent members of the community are placed at a disadvantageous position,’ he notes.

‘We serve humankind by playing a critical role in the promotion of Section 34 of the Bill of Rights which guarantees that everyone has access to justice through the court of law in a democratic South Africa. Thus, the Unisa Law Clinic is a justice centre duly recognised in terms of the Legal Practice Act, 28 of 2014 (as amended) and accredited by the Legal Practice Council,’ Morota concludes.

College of Law Acting Executive Dean, Professor Olaotse Kole, says that Unisa should have law clinics in all regional centres where it operates.  He adds: ‘We are intensifying the notion of the African university in the service of humanity – we cannot call ourselves African if we continue to confine our law clinic to Pretoria and maintain the status quo.’

In Kole’s view, the establishment of law clinics in other areas brings back the dignity of Unisa’s black students and communities to receive justice and quality education.

The stakeholders, speakers and dignitaries who were present at the Western Cape launch.

The Unisa Law Clinic deals with matters such as divorce, maintenance, domestic violence and eviction, and civil, labour and impact litigation. However, the law clinics will not provide service on the Road Accident Fund (RAF), administration of estate, liquidation matters, conveyancing patents, copy rights, trademarks, medical negligence, representation of a juristic person and drafting of wills.

Recently, the Unisa Law Clinic’s Nomonde Gxilishe represented Babalo Ndwayana, the Stellenbosch University student whose room and belongings were urinated on by another student.

Unisa, through this community project, continues to close structural and inequality gaps by extending its assistance to the unprivileged communities. 

Click here to watch community response to the launch of the Polokwane branch, which took place on the 26th of May 2022.

Click here to watch community response to the launch of the Mpumalanga branch, which took place on the 1st of July 2022.

Click here to watch community responses to the launch of the Western Cape branch, which took place on the 8th of July 2022.

*By Lesego Chiloane-Ravhudzulo, Journalist, Department of Institutional Advancement

Publish date: 2022-07-26 00:00:00.0