The Department of Private Law has in the past few years been well represented at the World Conferences of the International Society of Family Law:
Prof Trynie Boezaart presented the opening address, representing lawyers from Africa at the 5th International World Summit on Children, Poverty and Violence in Montreal, Quebec, Canada on 22 October 2004.
In August 2002 Profs Trynie Boezaart, Neil van Schalkwyk and Maithufi attended the 11th World Conference which was held at the Universities of Copenhagen (Denmark) and Oslo (Norway). Prof Boezaart’s presentation was entitled “The African Charter on the Rights and Welfare of the Child: Realizing Children’s Rights in Africa”. Prof Maithufi addressed the conference on “The Constitution and the Application of Customary Law in South Africa” and Prof Neil van Schalkwyk made a poster presentation.
In 2005 Profs Neil van Schalkwyk and Anton van der Linde and Dr Anne Louw attended the 12th World Conference in Salt Lake City, Utah where they presented the following papers: Prof Neil van Schalkwyk: “The Power of a Custodial Parent to Remove the Child from the Republic of South Africa after Divorce”; Prof Anton van der Linde: “The State’s Duty to Reunite Parent and Child: A European Human Rights Perspective”; and Dr Anne Louw: “Intercountry Adoptions: Local Alternative Care or Foreign Parental Care”.
Profs June Sinclair and Jan Bekker (both honorary professors in the Department), Trynie Boezaart, Neil Van Schalkwyk and Anton Van der Linde as well as Dr Anne Louw also attended the 13th World Conference in Vienna, Austria in September 2008. Prof Trynie Boezaart (with Prof Sinclair) presented a paper on the “Evolving family forms and the duty of support in South African law”; Prof Neil van Schalkwyk presented a paper on “the extinction of the maintenance obligation towards children”; Prof Anton van der Linde addressed the topic “The extent of the state’s duty to support family life through prevention and early intervention programmes: A reflection on the Children’s Act 38 of 2005”; and Dr Anne Louw presented a paper on “Rainbowism in South African Family Law”.
Prof Bekker published his paper entitled “An analysis of the rights of South African women and children to maintenance from husbands and fathers in African customary marriages and domestic partnerships” presented at the 2008 ISFL conference in Vienna in B Verschraegen (ed) Family Finances 99 Jan Sramek Verlag, Vienna. Prof Anton van der Linde’s paper was also included in the same publication.
Prof Johan Scott presented a lecture at the Institute for European Tort and Insurance Law by invitation from Prof Dr Helmut Koziol on 11 April 2010 in Vienna, Austria on "The impact of the Constitution on the SA Law of Delict” with particular reference to developments in the area of unlawful arrest.
Prof IP Maithufi has presented the following papers:
- “Racism and the Legal Order: South Africa’s Road to Democracy” International Congress of Anthropological and Ethnological Sciences held at University of Pardubice, Czech Republic (29 August-2 September 2005)
- “Adopting Customary Law in a Democratic Dispensation” Conference on Traditional Governance and Customary Law (Southern African perspectives) held at University of Namibia, Windhoek (16 -29 July 2004)
- “Building a Truly Independent Judiciary as a Basis for Sustainable Governance, Peace and Stability: Prospects and Challenges for a Developing Country” 2nd International Conference on Law/Judicial Reform for Rwanda held at Kigali, Rwanda (23-27 June 2003)
- “Legal pluralism, human rights and law reform: Dilemmas to be faced” International Congress of the Commission on Legal Pluralism, University of Zurich, Switzerland (31 August to 3 September 2009)
Dr Birgit Kuschke, as a member and national Rapporteurr for the Working Party on Pollution, Products and New Technologies of the International Insurance Law Association (AIDA), has presented the following papers:
- 1999 Gdansk Colloquium: “Millennium Risk and Insurance”
- 2002 New York World Conference: “Report on: A questionnaire on genetically modified organisms” and “E-Trade Risks”
- 2006 Buenos Aires World Conference: Theme II of the 2nd Plenary Session of the conference “The Influence of Scientific and Technological Innovations on Personal Insurance” and Working Party Study on “Liability of Internet Service Providers, in particular, Certification Service Providers”.
Dr Birgit Kuschke presented the following papers at the World Congress of the International Association for Insurance Law held in Paris in May 2010 as National Reporter for South Africa:
- “The Effect of Climate Change on the Insurance Industry”;
- “Mandatory Insurance: Legal and economic myths and realities”.
Dr Birgit Kuschke also made a contribution on “Proposed Rules for Group Personal Insurance Schemes” at the Meeting of the Life, Pension and Collective Insurance Working Party held at the same World Congress.
Prof Trynie Boezaart presented papers at the following national conferences:
- 01-09-2003 “Educators or guardian angels? The standard of care revisited” at the 8th World Conference of the South African Education Law and Policy Association at Magoebaskloof
- “21-03-2005 “The Child’s Rights to Participate in Legal Proceedings” at the 4th World Congress on Family Law and Children’s Rights in Cape Town
- “Child abuse in the family: Looking for solutions” at SAPSAC (South African Professional Society on the Abuse of Children) 2nd Annual National Conference, Pretoria on 15 May 2001
- Opening Address at Child Law Seminar convened by Justice College for Judicial Officers on 2 December 2003 at Kopanong
- Speaker at Child Law Seminar on “Child Law: A Revolution” presented by LEAD, Law Society of South Africa on 18 August 2004 at Midrand
- “Litigation as a tool to realize the most basic fundamental rights of women and children” at a conference on Law in a Transforming Society at UNISA 24-26 January 2006
- “Children’s rights and the Constitution” at the Nuffield Conference on The Legal Protection of Human Rights in Southern Africa, Bloemfontein on 11 April 2001
- “The rights of children with mental disabilities” at Mental Health Workshop, Maseru, Lesotho, convened by Instituted for Advanced Legal Studies, University of London and the Faculty of Law, University of Free State on 30 July 2001
- Prof Trynie Boezaart and Dr Ann Skelton presented a paper entitled “From pillar to post: Legal solutions for children with debilitating conduct disorder” at a Conference on Developments in the field of disability law in Africa on 3 September 2010 at UP.
In 2005 Prof Anton Van der Linde participated in various SARS training seminars held in all the major centres in South Africa, presenting lectures on the “Administration and Taxation of Trusts”.
In 2005 Prof Anton van der Linde conducted a series of seminars on “Trusts Through the Case Law” in conjunction with C Divaris & M Stein in all the main centres in South Africa, ie Pretoria, Johannesburg, Cape Town, Durban, East London and Port Elizabeth.
Most recently Prof Anton van der Linde presented a paper entitled “The consequences of not adhering to the basic trust idea: Some questions” at a Succession and Trust Law seminar which was held at the University of the Western Cape on 3 September 2010.
Prof Neil van Schalkwyk and Dr Anne Louw as the lecturers in Family Law hosted a national Family Law Colloquium on 23 October 2009 at the Serengeti, UP. Both lecturers presented papers at the same colloquium.
Several lecturers from the Department presented papers at the Family Law Colloquium held at the University of the Western Cape on 23 September 2010.
Other Events and Research Activities of Interest
- Prof Trynie Boezaart, the head of the department, served as acting judge in the Transvaal Provincial Division of the High Court (as it was then) from April to June 2008.
- Profs Jan Bekker (honorary professor in the Department) and Johan Scott visited the Catholic University, Leuven in Belgium for purposes of research during May and June 2008 respectively.
- Mr Pieter van der Spuy assisted in the hosting of the Law of Things Colloquium that was held at UP in 2008 and paid a visit to the Centre for Advanced Legal Studies at the University of London.
- Prof Linda Schoeman-Malan was seconded as Deputy Director to Student Affairs in April 2009.
- A delegation of Chinese judges visited the Faculty, and the Department of Private Law in particular, during May 2009.
- A Vietnamese delegation of jurists visited the Faculty in July 2009 and Prof Anton van der Linde addressed the delegation on the possibility of future co-operation.
- The Department is very proud of our Secretary, Mrs Amelia Jansen, who in 2009 won second prize for her book “Boeta Beer” in the annual competition for first year BEd students for authentic picture books for children.
- Prof Steve Cornelius joined the Department in 2010 as a professor in the Law of Obligations.
The Department made its contribution to the Law Faculty Festival on 25 February 2010 by simulating a radio station, “Radio Private Law”, with music requests. The station was manned by DJ’s recruited from members of the Department. The “programme” was well received and contributed to the festive atmosphere. The Department also displayed human “statues” symbolising justice that only moved every time a coin was donated by the crowd.
Departmental Research Discussions
The following discussions were hosted by the Department in the course of 2010:
||Dr Anne Louw - “Acquisition of Parental responsibilities and rights”
||Prof Steve Cornelius - "Drafting of Contracts"
||Mr Mark Botha - “Private Defence in the South African Law of Delict: A Response to Aspects of Fagan’s Rethinking Wrongfulness in the Law of Delict.”
||Prof Johan van der Vyver - “International dimensions of child law”.
||“The right to self determination of peoples”
||Prof Jan Bekker- “Aspects of the Older Persons Act 13 of 2006”
||Dr Mariana Buchner-Eveleigh – "A critical analysis of legislation affecting the health of children".
||Prof Martha West – “Title IX and women’s sports”
Integrated Legal Problem Solving Excercise
The Integrated Legal Problem for 2010 was set by lecturers in the Department of Private Law. Prof Anton van der Linde, assisted by Dr Anne Louw and Prof Steve Cornelius will assess the work of the students participating in this exercise. The feedback session of the first draft legal opinions submitted by the students was held on 6 August 2010. The final assignments are due on 4 October 2010.
Degrees, Bursaries and Outstanding Achievements
Dr Mariana Buchner Eveleigh obtained her LLD for her thesis entitled “'n Kritiese evaluering van wetgewing wat die gesondheid van kinders beïnvloed” under the supervision of Prof JM Kruger at UNISA on 17 May 2010.
Mr Ruan Maré received the Anton and Huberte Rupert Chancellors Bursary for 2010. To ensure that the memory of Dr and Mrs Rupert lives on at their Alma Mater, the Rupert Foundation decided to create a prestige bursary to the amount of between R100 000 - R150 000, which will be awarded annually to a postgraduate student of the University of Pretoria. Such a student must have completed an undergraduate degree at the University of Pretoria and the allocation of the bursary is judged according to the candidate’s exceptional achievements on undergraduate level. The candidate must also have received a Vice-Chancellor and Principal’s Medal for his or her exceptional undergraduate achievements. That is why only about eight students (one from each faculty) throughout the University can qualify for this prestige bursary annually. The bursary covers all study expenses and can also be used for research abroad.
Mr Ruan Maré was the Faculty of Law’s receiver of the Vice-Chancellor and Principal’s Medal for the class of 2009. He achieved 48 distinctions from 55 modules over four years. Apart from his academic achievements Ruan also served as a judge (and later a senior judge) on the Constitutional Tribunal (formerly the Student Court). In 2008 Ruan was a member of the Independent Electoral Committee that organised the annual SRC elections. The following year he was a member of the Independent Monitoring Body that observed the fairness of the SRC election. He started working part-time as an assistant in the Department of Private Law in 2007 and in 2009 he advanced to a tutor. He tutored Law of Persons, Law of Things and Intellectual Property Law.
He was awarded an amount of R100 000 by the Rupert Foundation and aims to undertake research abroad in order to complement the research module of his LLM in Criminal Law degree.