Kigali, Rwanda – Siaffa Bahn Kemokai, the outgoing president of the Federation of African Law Students (FALAS) at the 2023 Conference in Kigali, Rwanda said his leadership has increased FALAS membership from 22 to 40 member countries.
By J.H. Webster Clayeh (0886729972)[email protected]
FALAS is the unifying body of law students across the African continent. It is also an international, non-partisan association that is wired towards building a united Africa.
Speaking at FALAS 2023 conference held in Kigali, Kemokai disclosed several achievements since getting to the helm of the continent legal students’ body on November 18, 2022. It was the first in-person inauguration held in Liberia’s capital Monrovia since the Federation was established.
According to FALAS president, his leadership prioritized the strengthening of the organization membership system. This goal, he added, was achieved when FALAS launched the first ever online membership portal led by it International Director for Membership, Honorable Oswald.
“This initiative also served to generate funds for the Federation. We expanded our membership from 22 countries to 40 countries, meaning our leadership brought 15 new countries on board. Furthermore, we organized various WhatsApp groups to streamline the dissemination of information to our members,” he said.
Kemokai added: “Our leadership’s priority was to build networks and partnerships. We accomplished this when the New York Law School agreed to partner with FALAS to establish the Racial Justice Project, which is still underway. We hope that the succeeding leadership will bring this project to fruition. Further, we established a partnership with AFRICA Legal to offer online courses and training to Falasites, a program that is progressing well.”
At the FALAS 2023 conference in Kigali, Kemokai said his institution has forged a collaboration with the International Youth Fellowship, something he said that resulted FALAS being represented at the 2023 IYF World Camp in Seoul, South Korea.
“The International Human Rights Commission has commended our work and has graciously accepted our invitation to serve as one of the Guest Speakers at our 2023 annual conference,” he said.
Kemokai added: “Our leadership has also partnered with the Independent Human Rights Group for North Africa to organize a conference on the good governance and development of Africa. This is being led by the President, Ambassador NAJi Moulay Lahsen, who is also one of the guest speakers for the 2023 annual conference.”
He furthers that FALAS under his leadership also collaborated with the Private Sector Investment to organize a Moot Competition on AfFCTA (African Free Continental Free Trade Agreement), which is now in its final stages.
Presently, Kemokai says his institution is partnering with the International Law Students Association to assist with organizing the JESSUP International Moot Competition.
“Our leadership advocated for the release of the Secretary General of the FALAS South Africa Chapter, Mtshali, when his rights were grossly violated due to police brutality. We worked with the International Human Rights Commission near New York and the president of the Independent Human Rights Group for North Africa to secure his release. We also publicly condemned the unjustified war in Sudan and the coups in Guinea, Burkina Faso, Niger, and other countries, calling for a return to the rule of law,” he said.
“The FALAS Students Directorate launched their social mental health department, which included support groups. These groups cater to students’ mental health needs more intimately and actively, covering areas such as physical and sexual abuse, emotional abuse, depression and suicidal thoughts,” Kemokai said.