Moot finalists (back from left): Mr Siboniso
Kheswa, Ms Sibusile Pearl Khusi, Ms Tasneem
Hassim and Mr Masimbonge Mtshali with Mr
Justice Piet Koen and Mr Justice Rishi Seegobin.

The Annual Moot Final, described as an event where the best and brightest final year Law students get to show off their forensic skills, was recently hosted by the School of Law on UKZN’s Pietermaritzburg campus.

Four finalists – Ms Sibusile Pearl Khusi, Ms Tasneem Hassim, Mr Siboniso Kheswa and Mr Masimbonge Mtshali – displayed their legal prowess in front of academics, family, friends, and Mr Justice Piet Koen and Mr Justice Rishi Seegobin.

The finalists, who pleasantly surprised the judges with their level of professionalism in addressing the court, were commended by Judge Koen for the level of preparation that was displayed by their oral presentations, and the detail with which they prepared their heads of argument. Judge Koen also expressed appreciation for the enthusiasm and dedication shown by the participants, which saw a close contest for the two prizes of the evening, with Kheswa and Khusi being declared the eventual winners. The finalists, who each described the Moot as an honour and privilege to participate in, said their experience of the final had been both exciting and stressful. ‘The first Moots where everybody had to do it, those were enjoyable – the moot final was slightly more challenging, but nonetheless a privilege to have just been a part of it,’ said Khusi. ‘It was nerve-wracking but exciting at the same time – this morning we had a practice round and it went well, so we were a lot more confident,’ added Hassim.

The finalists explained that the Moot had taken a great amount of preparation, which entailed consulting with experts and lecturers, textbooks, journals, case laws and most importantly working with the facts of the case. ‘Essentially, it’s working with the facts that you have and trying to incorporate the law into those facts – so it is a lot of preparation,’ said Mtshali.

They were humble about being chosen out of a number of other students and attributed their success to their lecturers, who provided them with invaluable support, encouragement and guidance leading up to the finals. ‘All of the lecturers were a great help. I really attribute my success to them because with them not being there, I wouldn’t be as confident as I was today,’ said Kheswa. The finalists’ plans for the future include serving their articles starting in January next year. Mtshali will move to Durban where he begins work at Adams and Adams Attorneys in Umhlanga; Kheswa takes up a position at Tomlinson, Mnguni James Attorneys, in Pietermaritzburg; while Khusi begins serving her articles at Adams and Adams Attorneys in Pretoria.