I and many of my colleagues in practice owe an inexpressible debt to him and to

I and many of my colleagues in practice owe an

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I and many of my colleagues in practice owe an inexpressible debt to him and to his predecessors I am going to decline to articulate some of the most humorous moments I had with him, lest I be accused of turning this rare moment into a comical one.
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Your Lordships, I will strive on this occasion to speak about things that matter to the profession, I shall do so, but only in part. For what I want to talk about today is a common malaise: a lack of critical introspection across the face of legal life in this jurisdiction. My humble thesis is that, for all lawyers, there are disturbing developments about which we are insufficiently articulate and active. I’ll ask that I be allowed to illustrate my point with scattered examples from three different areas of our shared complacency. The first concerns adjudication. The second concerns legal practice. And the third concerns the academia, what they do in legal education and what we, the legal profession, do or should ourselves do in legal education. Time does not permit today to speak in detail of the many challenges with which I believe courts in Lesotho are confronted with. I would however like to say two things in this respect. The first is that it is time to end an approach which is insufficiently rigorous in the scrutiny of the judgments of this Honourable court, and how they function. I do not mean by this that there should be anything less than professional respect for judges, and least of all that there should be the kind of attacks on courts, chiefly by political figures, which from time to time have been manifested. But other than the writings of a few law teachers in the faculty of Law in the National University of Lesotho, What probing critique has there been in the last few years of the work of this Honourable Court as the highest and last resort for litigants? It is perhaps prudent to commend among others the detailed exegesis of my learned senior Advocate K.K. Mohau K.C. on this Honourable Court’s decision in Mothobi v. Sebotsa. 1 A publication which is showcased in the venerable Lesotho Law Journal 2 - This case commenced in the High Court as an action for an order of specific performance of a contract of sale of rights in immovable property. The purchaser sought an order directing the heir of the lady who had sold him her rights in some immovable property, to sign all documents necessary to effect the transfer of the lease over that property into his names. The ‘agreement’ sued upon was a verbal one allegedly concluded in 1982; and the summons for its enforcement was only issued in June 2005, some twenty three years after the agreement had been concluded. This was after the alleged buyer had taken occupation of the premises and rented them out to his own tenants immediately after the conclusion of the purported agreement. The High Court granted the orders sought but, 1 2007-2008 LAC 439 2 Volume 18 2008-2009 p. 175
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on appeal, this Honourable Court set aside the orders of the High Court and substituted in their place, an order dismissing the claims with costs.
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  • Spring '13
  • Mr.Minken

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