Legal Assistance Centre

COMMENT ON HUMAN RIGHTS

New GRAP publications list
2020

ALL ANNUAL REPORTS

2017 Annual ReportPresenting our Annual report 2018. It list our work and activities, new publications, donors and much more.

FACT SHEETS ON THE CHILD CARE AND PROTECTION ACT

2018 AdvocacyThis is a summary of all of the materials published before in 3 languages.English
Afrikaans
Oshiwambo .

FACT SHEETS ON ADVOCACY

2018 AdvocacyA series of six on
"How laws are made", Common Law,
Statute Law, Customary
and International Law.

FACT SHEETS ON THE GOVERNMENT

2018 Rule of LawIn a series of 8 we explain
Government structures, branches, watchdogs, elections and how new laws are made.

FACT SHEETS ON RULE OF LAW

2018 Rule of LawA series of six on
"How laws are made", Common Law,
Statute Law, Customary
and International Law.

Comic on Poaching

With the current rise of poaching incidents this comic aids to protect our heritage...



Under the National Resettlement Programme the State purchases freehold commercial farms ...


Mental health mattersAn illustrative comic about recognising and responding to mental health needs in Namibia.


Equal opportunitiesDespite the constitutional provision that all people are equal in Namibia,this is often not the case.

 

 


GOVERNMENT GAZETTE - State of Emergency - Covid-19 Regulations: Namibian Constitution

PRESS RELEASE - COVID-19 State of Emergency and Lockdown Measures
Call on Security Personnel

The Legal Assistance Centre herewith calls upon the Namibian Police, the National Defence Force, and any other persons and organizations mandated to ensure compliance with security measures, to act in accordance with the Police Act 19 of 1990, and the subsequent Regulations in terms thereof and the Defence Act 1 of 2002, when dealing with persons during the state of emergency and lockdown.
All police and security personnel are called upon to ensure no human rights violations occur, which have not been derogated in terms of the Constitution of Namibia.

OFFICE CLOSURE
In light of the additional COVID-19 measures by the President and National Assembly, the LAC closure will be extended to 16 April 2020. All business will continue as usual via our respective emails, Facebook, cell, and fax lines.

PROBONO 41 - Law Society of Namibia
The recent Fishrot scandal has led to some concerns about the Law Society of Namibia (LSN), as question marks about possible related activities of several lawyers and law firms. After several calls for action from the public in this regard, the LSN released two press statements at the beginning of December 2019. Read on...

PRESS RELEASE - State of Emergency
In light of the World Health Organization’s designation of COVID-19 (Coronavirus) as a global pandemic, the President of the Republic of Namibia on 17 March 2020, declared a state of (public health) emergency in Namibia.
The LAC herewith releases the above Press Release with a clarification on the matter. The press release is supported by the Action Coalition, a proponent of freedom of expression in Namibia.

NAMLEX Update
We are happy to announce the newest update to the Index of Namibian Laws up to the end of 2019. Full document as PDF or as link above.
The Annotated Statutes and Regulations will be posted as soon as possible.

Launching of booklet on the use of Force by Law Enforcement Officers
In collaboration with the Hanns Seidel Foundation, we launched a booklet analysing the use of excessive force by law enforcement officers, which sometimes results in civilians losing their lives. Read the article in the Namibian or pdf

ProBono - Presidential Debates
Namibia could become the first country in Africa to make Presidential debates obligatory, by amending the Electoral Act. To require that the Electoral Commission of Namibia must organize one or more televised debates in the run-up to the election.
A model of respectful political debate between the candidates could encourage the electorate to adopt the same tone, as well as showcasing Namibia as an example of open and accountable democracy.

Baxu screening at the DHPS on 6 February 2020
 ‘Baxu and the Giants’ will have its first public screening of the year at the DHPS Auditorium, on Thursday, 6 February at 18H30 for 19H00 in the Auditorium.
Entrance is free but any donations to the Save the Rhino Trust will be welcome and will be collected after the event. .

Serious access to information concerns that dogged electoral governance before, during and after the November 27 elections
As the Legal Assistance Centre is a member of the Action Coalition we wish to reiterate this press statement made:
"Elections are highly sensitive periods in any democracy. Every effort should be made by relevant authorities and stakeholders to ensure the integrity of electoral processes and institutions, as electoral governance has an irrefutably immense impact on political and socio-economic, not to mention substantive democratic, outcomes in societies, especially in relatively young countries such as Namibia."

The ACTION Coalition has identified five issues of particular concern, namely:
1. Electronic Voting Machines (EVMs)
2. Voting (voter education, voting and counting)
3. Verification and Election results
4. Political finance
5. Interactions with media and other electoral observers
Please read full statement here.

EU funds our Gender Research and Advocacy Project
The two-year project will be rolled out under the theme: 'Love With Respect And Discipline With Care: Outreach On Gender Based Violence, Alternatives To Corporal Punishment And The Childcare And Protection Act.'
Project leader Dianne Hubbard said it will include 10 radio shows, 36 community workshops, new comics about the act, a You Tube video on corporal punishment and reprints of materials on the links between GBV and corporal punishment.
We wish to express our sincere gratitude for this donation. Read here: NBC or Namibian.

Protestors demand arrest of senior public officials implicated in corruption
NBC reports: Protestors from Windhoek marched to the Anti-Corruption Commission (ACC) on Friday, 22 November, denouncing the ongoing corruption in the country.
The demonstration was triggered by revelations of bribery and corruption scandal involving former Cabinet ministers and prominent figures from the private sector. LAC and various lawyers took part.

Pro Bono: Election Day: What to do if you witness an irregularity
The forthcoming elections are the nation’s sixth national election. So far, Namibia has avoided the pitfalls of many nations whose elections are marred by violence and fraud.
There is always the possibility that some person or party may attempt to unfairly influence an election. As a citizen you have a right to be concerned, even though no election fraud has ever been proved in Namibia.
Some have expressed concerns about the missing electronic voting machines. Public awareness of the procedures will help to safeguard the process. Read more...

ACTION Coalition press conference
There was a Press Conference today on Concerning Issues Related to Access to Information (ATI) in the Context of the Campaigning for the 27 November 2019 National Assembly and Presidential Elections.
Our Director, Mrs. Toni Hancox, will speak on Nampol/NDF operations.

Pro Bono: Election Day: Persons and procedures
The nation goes to vote on 27 November. Who will be present at the polling station and what rules apply on that day? Please read further articles on our Probation page.

The Legal Assistance Centre congratulates Justice David Smuts, the founder of the Legal Assistance Centre, on the release of his book, titled Death, Detention and Disappearance.   We thank him for his generous donation from the proceeds of the books sold during the Windhoek launch.
The book relates the experiences of the author as a young Windhoek lawyer, compelled to take on the human rights abuses perpetrated by the South African security forces.
As Senior Council Geoff Budlender comments:
"A lively and compelling account of the struggle of the Namibian people to hold illegitimate power accountable through the courts, as they fought for their independence from brutal colonial rule. This is an important book with wide significance."

PAY UP: The health ministry is struggling to pay a N$730 000 settlement arising from the death of a woman in 2015 (Namibian Sun)
The health ministry has blamed a lack of money for failing to comply with a court order to pay a grieving widower N$730 000 by December last year.
In June, Vilho Sakaria was forced to turn to the Windhoek High Court for a second time in an attempt to force the ministry to comply with the settlement agreement reached last year.
Sharen Zenda of the LAC is appearing on behalf of Vilho, while government attorney Immanuel Wynand Dausab has been appointed to represent the health ministry.

LAC and Nampower increase learning capacity of learners in Zambezi Region
On Monday, 21 October 2019, the NamPower Foundation handed over 150 solar lights to the Legal Assistance Centre in Windhoek. The LAC will donate the solar lights to 150 pupils in the Zambezi region as part of the LAC’s advocacy programme on environmental and wildlife protection in the Zambezi region.
Also read in: Economist, Namibian Sun, Informante and New Era

The second public Screening of "Baxu and the Giants" in Namibia is donated to Save the Rhino Trust (SRT)
We would like to thank Namibian Scientific Society (NSS), the Namibia Environment and Wildlife Society (News) and Deutsche Höhere Privatschule (DHPS) Alumni for organizing this successful event.

Baxu and the Giants
Once again this movie has made headlines!
We are proud to annonce 3 winners at the 2019 Namibian Theatre & Film Awards!

Our Star Camilla Jo-Ann Daries for Best Female Actor
Tanya Stroh for Best Production Design
Robert Scott for Best Editing

Congratulations to all!
More about the movie here.

Baxu and the Giants had it's World Premiere at the San Francisco Independent Short Film Festival where it also bagged an award for best foreign narrative. Article here or pdf.

Baxu and the Giants
Film screening on the 19th
Read in the Namibian and Economist
Another screeening followed at the DHPS

PRESS RELEASE on state of health
The headline in the Namibian newspaper refers: “Woman dies in clinic queue”.
There is a constitutional and international obligation on a State to respect, protect and fulfil the human right to have timely access to acceptable basic health services.
We call upon our Government to do so.

Wildlife Protection advocacy project in Zambesi kicks off - August 2019
Report in the Namibian Economist and in the NAMIBIAN

As part of the GIZ funded “Partnership against Poaching and Illegal Wildlife Trade” the LAC is currently conducting an advocacy programme on environment and wildlife protection in the Zambesi Region.
The LAC recently visited two schools, namely the Mafuta Combined School and the Silumbi Combined School, in Eatern Zambesi. We provided 3-day-training (each) on climate change and adaptation measures, the ecosystem, biodiversity, wildlife crime and resource management to approximately 80 learners.
In addition the Namibian animation TV series /Gasa was shown, advocacy postcards were sent out to H.E. Hage Geingob, President of the Republic, and others, and 10 local shade trees and fruit trees were planted.
The learners were visited by the UNAM Katima Mulilo Wildlife Management and Ecoutourism department under the leadership of Ekkehard Klingelhoefer, the Regional Director for Education, Joy Mamili, and the Katima Mulilo Magistrate Court Public Prosecutor Diana Khama, a member of the PG’s wildlife crime unit. All the experts shared their knowledge with the learners.
In addition, each school painted a mural on their school premises, in order to sustain the momentum and leave a legacy at the school, once the learners leave the school.
The next visits to other schools in the Zambesi Region will be done during September and will include the Ndora Memorial School in Omega 3 and the Kasheshe Combined School in Kasheshe. Furthermore the LAC will participate at the Chobe Wildlife Cub, on Impalilia Island, where youth will be learn about wildlife protection.
The main funder of the project is the Deutsche Gesellschaft fuer International Zusammenarbeit (GIZ) GmbH. Additional support in kind came from Woermann & Brock We Care, SPAR Katima Mulilo, NeoPaints Namibia, the Pupkewitz Foundation,  SlowTown Coffee, MegaShade Namibia, Sanlam, UNAM Katima Mulilo Campus, EduVentures, and the Konrad-Adenauer Foundation.

Zero Tolerance on Sexual Violence
The Namibia University of Science and Technology (NUST) hosted a public discussion in an effort to develop a strategy on how to combat sexual violence within the campus community.
Our Yolande Engelbrecht took part as a panellist and spoke on rape as “the intentional commission of a sexual act under coercive circumstances". The Patriot reported.

Our Annual Report for 2018 is available for download with a strong foreword from our Director Mrs. Toni Hancox:
"It has been 30 years since the LAC was founded. The goal then was to protect those who had been tortured and mistreated by the ruling apartheid regime.
Independence followed and the LAC’s role changed into an organisation that would support new legislation and policy focusing on the protection of the human rights outlined in the Namibian Constitution.
The occasion of a significant anniversary in the life of an organisation provides the opportunity to reflect on the impact made through its activities.
Has the LAC contributed to the needs of those most marginalised?
Yes, we have. But has that meant real change for our people?
This is a question that is not so easy to answer. While the LAC has made a major impact on aligning both legislation and policy with internationally accepted human rights, what is lacking is making this impact real in the lives of those we serve.

This is not something the LAC can do alone, but what we can do is continue to hold the relevant stakeholders within government and other organisations accountable by being persistent and in some cases just plain annoying. It does not give me joy to say that the LAC is still an organisation that is sorely needed in an independent Namibia. This is sadly the reality.
I challenge all within this beautiful country to make a positive contribution to the lives of all within it, however small – so that the LAC will not be needed for 30 more years."

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What we do

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Reference to Government Legal Aid

MISSION STATEMENT
We, the Legal Assistance Centre, being a public interest law centre, collectively strive to make the law accessible to those with the least access, through education, law reform, research, litigation, legal advice, representation and lobbying, with the ultimate aim of creating and maintaining a human rights culture in Namibia.
Annotated Statutes

Updated to 31 December 2019
- uploaded

Annotated Regulations

Updated to 31 December 2019 -uploaded soonest

Namlex 2020 Update

Updated to 31 December 2019 -uploaded

Gazettes

Full Archive of Gazettes

New series published under current news
ProBono
New Laws passed
Windhoek Water Tariffs
Updated Electoral Act
Regulations
Act 2 of 2019
Promulgation of Appropriation Act
Act 1 of 2019 Public Enterprises Governance

Act 23:
Seeds and Seed varietiesGaming and Entertainment Control
Act 22:
Administration of Estates Amendment
Act 21:
Repeal of Obsolete Laws
Act 20:
International Co-operation in Criminal Matters Amendment
Act 19:
Extradition Amensment
Act 18:
Public Service Amendment
Act 17:
National Symbols
Act 16:
Namibia Deposit Guarantee
Act 15:
Appropriation Amendment
Act 14: Criminal Procedure Repeal
Regulations:
Public Private Partnership

Safety for Children

Winner of the JP Karuaihe Human Rights Excellence Award 2008, 2010, 2014 and 2016 and Social Responsibility Award 2013

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