VACANCIES: applications are closing on 13 December 2021 and for candidates on 31 January 2022! Apply here
- Combating Corruption in Namibia’s Legal Profession
As part of a campaign to encourage the public to report and combat corruption wherever they encounter it, the Legal Assistance Centre has produced a pamphlet on misconduct by members of the legal profession, to inform the public about what to expect from a legal practitioner and how to make a complaint to the Law Society of Namibia in cases of misconduct. The goal is to provide a model for encouraging accountability. We hope to inspire similar initiatives in other sectors. Print version
- Learn about the law: Statute summaries
We also have started a project to provide short and simple summaries of some key statutes that affect many members of the public, organised by theme. Each summary discusses the main topics covered by the statute, along with some background information and commentary. The idea is to highlight the points that seem to be of most interest to the public. The first batch of summaries was launched today, and we hope to gradually add summaries of additional statutes in future years.
30 September 2021 – Namlex and annotated Statutes and Regulations
We are happy to announce a full update to our Index to Laws (NAMLEX) and annotated statutes and regulations as well as Covid-19 rules. All information is current up to 30 September. To find out about Namibian law and the availability of the databases read here or go to the relevant drop-down menus.
We also have published full indexes of Pre-independence gazettes as published by the official Government gazette printers. These are for historical research and not necessarily current any more. Pre-independence gazettes will be published as available.
Probono 66 – Free, Prior and Informed Consent: What is it and how does it apply to the protection of Namibia’s indigenous peoples’ rights over their land and natural resources?
The ongoing challenges around the oil exploration has prompted us to take a closer look at a related issue: the free, prior and informed consent principle, and how it relates to the protection of Namibia’s indigenous peoples’ rights over their land and natural resources.
Probono 65 – Safeguarding Children’s Rights
Namibia’s key law on children, the Child Care and Protection Act 3 of 2015, is intended to safeguard children’s rights against abuse, neglect or other hardships. It provides clear procedures to make sure that children get the protection and assistance they need.
Yet the legal protections for our children are not always applied as robustly as they should be. More…
Probono 64 – The infamous “Red Line” Why does Namibia have a veterinary cordon fence?
Beef exports play an important role in the Namibian agricultural economy and stringent disease control measures are crucial in sustaining Namibia’s beef exporting industry. Read more about the origin and importance of the Red Line.
17 May 2021 – Tala – Namibian Film Festival
Some of our films are presented at the first ever Namibian Film Festival Tala! Please vote for your favourite documentary, story or music. Our LAC films include Baxu and the Giants, Born in Etosha, Struggle for Justice, a Betta Way, Whispers in the Wind and Not a Life you ask for.
Last week was a good week for us!
We are proud to announce that LAC trustee, Esi Schimming-Chase has been appointed as Judge in the High Court of Namibia as from April 2021.
We congratulate Esi on her appointment as Judge and are confident that she will acquit herself well in this very demanding position.
Our young Social Justice team had their first appearance in court. They won their case in the Katutura Magistrate’s Court in the fight against domestic violence. The SJP team successfully argued for an interim protection order to be made final. Read more on our Blog.
March 2021 – Probono -56 -Child Marriage
Child marriage has been in the news recently. It is worrying problem.
The Child Care and Protection Act strictly forbids child marriage by making it a crime to give a child out in marriage or engagement if the child is below age 18, or does not consent to the marriage or engagement.
March 2021 – Probono 55 – CCPA – Harmful practices
Are initiation customs such as sikenge and olufuko harmful to the girls who take part in them? Press reports on these rituals quote positive and negative perceptions from different participants. Read more in our ProBono.
January 2021 – Probono 54 – What is international law and why does is matter to Namibia?
International law is a set of rules, norms and standards generally accepted in relations between countries. It creates common legal obligations to guide countries on cross-border issues such as war, diplomacy, trade, the environment and human rights. In general, the purpose of international law is to help countries to follow stable, consistent and organized international relations.
4 December 2020 – The Law and Oil Exploration in Namibia
It has recently been reported in the media that Reconnaissance Energy Africa, a Canadian mining and exploration company, plans to prospect for oil and gas in the northeastern regions of Namibia bordering Botswana. In view of this announcement, this article aims to give a brief overview of the applicable legislative framework that regulates mining activities in or near environmentally sensitive and protected areas. Read more and view the photos of the recent demonstration.
4 December 2020 – Winner of the Judge JP Karuaihe Award
Congratulations to the LAC team on winning this prestigious “Award for Human Rights Excellence” at the annual general meeting of the Law Society for a 5th time! Our Director, Toni Hancox, accepted the reward on behalf of the LAC from Ngamane Karuaihe-Upi and Amanda Hauanga. Also in the Economist.
November 2020 – LEARN ABOUT THE LAWS OF NAMIBIA
Legal Information Online
The rule of law requires that laws must be accessible to everyone. The Legal Assistance Centre (LAC) has for many years now been publishing information to help members of the public know the law of Namibia as it stands today.
The LAC publishes three free legal databases to inform the legal profession and the public about the laws in force.
In 2020, the LAC and the Ministry of Justice entered into an agreement making all of these databases into a joint project to ensure their long-term sustainability.
- All of the databases are available on the LAC website
- All of the databases will soon be available on the Namibia Legal Information Institute website hosted by the Law Reform and Development Commission
- NAMLEX: Index of Namibian law
This is a list of the laws in force in Namibia, organised by topic, with brief descriptions of each law. In the case of laws inherited from South Africa, NAMLEX explains how they came to apply to Namibia and which South African amendments are in force in Namibia. The index also provides references to rules and regulations, appointments, court cases and commentary under each statute, and includes links to online versions of virtually all of the Gazettes cited. Think of it as the “Wikipedia” of Namibian law. NAMLEX
was initiated by the late Adv Anton Lubowski in 1988, and continued by the LAC after his death.
NAMLEX is now current to 31 October 2020.
- NAMLEX APPENDIX: Index of international law
NAMLEX is supplemented by a separate document called the NAMLEX APPENDIX, which contains detailed entries for all multilateral international treaties that are binding on Namibia. Each entry includes a summary of the treaty, a link to the most authoritative text of the treaty available online, the date when the treaty became binding on Namibia, information about amendments and protocols, and other explanatory information. The NAMLEX APPENDIX is prepared and updated with assistance from the Ministry of International Relations and Cooperation and Parliament.
- ANNOTATED LAWS: Statutes and regulations
The database of annotated laws was initiated by the Parliamentary Support Project in 2015 and has been maintained by LAC to date. This database includes all statutes and post-Independence regulations in force in Namibia, as amended. This enable users to view or download the current version of a statute in Word or PDF, and to access the regulations issued in terms of each statute. The database is now current to 31 October 2020. Pre-independence regulations are currently added in 2021.