Musa Dudhia and Company, one of the largest and oldest law firms in Zambia, has sponsored an inter University Moot Court competition for law students from four Lusaka based Universities.

Speaking in an interview with News Diggers! When the law firm held the moot court quarter final competition for the University of Zambia law students, at the Confucius institute, Musa Dudhia partner, Abigail Chimuka said the competition was aimed at building the advocacy skills in law students and prepare them for the industry.

Chimuka said the law firm believed that the country’s legal system could only work efficiently if lawyers were well trained.

“This event is called a moot court, this is the second time we are running it, last year we did it with only the University of Zambia. This year we have four Universities: Cavendish University, University of Lusaka, ZICAS and UNZA itself. The idea is to build advocate skills, the reason we want to build advocacy skills is that we believe in making our clients feel safe, and the bulk of our clientele is foreign investors. So when they come, one of the questions they ask before they invest in Zambia is; ‘does the court system work? If we bring in our money and something goes wrong, are we able to sue, get a judgment and enforce that judgment?’ So they want to know if the court system works, and the court system can only work if we have good lawyers who are able to interpret the law and provide the necessary skills and ensure that clients feel safe,” she said.

“This is part of our corporate social responsibility, there is no payment involved, we are doing this at our own time, at our own cost. We feel these young student lawyers have the necessary knowledge but we have to give them the necessary practical aspect to what they are learning. Last year there was a cash reward of K5000 and an internship to work with our law firm. So this year too, there will be a cash prize, the amount has not yet been set but by the time we reach the semifinals, we will know, and the internship is still available for the overall winner.”

She also disclosed that the final moot court competition will be held in the Supreme Court chambers with real Supreme Court Judges who will hear the cases and deliver judgment

“These are the quarter finals, we are now going in the semi-finals. We have already picked winners from UNILUS, CAVENDISH and ZICAS, so UNZA is the last group to qualify to go to the semi-finals. The Universities will be competing against each other, today it was only UNZA against UNZA. The two Universities that will win the semifinals will compete in the finals which will be held in the Supreme Court chambers. So that’s what we are aiming to do, exposing them to real Supreme Court judges and real life court,” said Chiumuka.

And winner of the UNZA moot court quarter finals, Mainga Simoonga, a third year Law student, said it was a privilege for him to be part of the competition.

“I feel so privileged and honoured to be surrounded by so many people in the University of Zambia, particularly the school of law that are willing to support us to ensure that we get far. I am a product of so many people coming together and believing in me, I owe this success to my friends who helped me with the research because the greatest of people are those who lean on the shoulders of others,” said Simmonga.