SU faculty of Law hosts international colloquium

The Faculty of Law at Stellenbosch University recently had the honour of hosting an international colloquium on so-called “mixed jurisdictions” at the request of two prominent international societies, namely the International Association of Legal Science and the World Society of Mixed Jurisdiction Jurists.

These jurisdictions, of which the South African law is a prime example, are characterised by the diversity of the different legal traditions embodied in them.

The focus of the colloquium was to determine the extent to which mixed jurisdictions can serve as models for legal development and to investigate the experience with the mixing of legal traditions in the African context.  Special emphasis was placed on the relationship between traditional Western systems such as the civilian (Roman) and Anglo-American systems, as opposed to the customary law of Africa as well as systems containing elements of religious law.  Perspectives from various legal systems were presented at the colloquium, as is also apparent from the variety of universities that sent speakers and participants: Cape Town, Botswana, Rivers State (Nigeria), Buea (Cameroon), McGill, Aberdeen, Edinburgh, Nottingham, Copenhagen and Istanbul.

The colloquium was organised by Professors Marius de Waal and Jacques du Plessis of the Faculty of Law and was opened by the Dean of the Faculty, Prof Gerhard Lubbe, as well as the representatives of the two international bodies, namely Prof Xavier Blanc-Jouvan of the University of Paris I and Prof Vernon Palmer of Tulane University in the USA.

The proceedings were closed by Prof Blanc-Jouvan who spoke on the topic The encounter between traditional law and modern law in French-speaking Africa: a personal reflection.