Monday, August 29, 2016

Now India says women shouldn't wear skirts, if they don't want to be raped.

There is a complex polemic at work when discussing women's attire.

Clothing in general is complex enough. Television shows routinely shame women for what they wear, from shows such as Fashion Police, to those which occupy the Style Channel, or fashion networks. A woman must neither be too revealing, nor hide too much from the imagination, if she wants the praise of her fellows in society, but those standards are liable to change with time, geography and ideology.

Open You or People magazine, and the shaming continues, as celebrities are mocked for poor outfit choices. Fashion bloggers might roast transgressors in print, while in some parts of the world, victims of societal standards might face actual roasting, a real knife in the heart, or a spray of acid in the face.

What we wear oddly defines us in society, whether male or female. And however much certain voices say that no one should tell a woman what to wear, at least when activists are looking to certain less savoury characters, an essential tenant of society, is that we are all told, daily, by our interactions with others: what to wear in our particular cultural or other bubble.

Like the voice of television and radio shows which judge singing and dancing, society has an obsession with voices which speak on fashion, partly because it defines a person's place in the social order. Few voices are more revered in parts of society, than those of harsh, unforgiving fashion designers and style gurus.

In France, a woman wearing essentially a repurposed scuba suit is considered a threat to the public order, for her wish to be more modest than society desires, and town mayors still insist on arresting those deemed anti-secular fashion offenders. This, despite the ruling of the highest administrative court: that burkinis are not against secularism.

Clothing is deemed by many to be an extension of the self, a declaration of intent, even of war.

The most controversial discussion however, resonates around rape.

A Canadian police official once told women to dress modestly, as rapists, he said, were more likely to target women who dressed in revealing attire. The term slut walk thus entered the vernacular of much of the English speaking world. Women objected to what they saw as the implication that 'slutty' women warranted or deserved rape. That implication hadn't been the intention of the witless police official, but by putting the spotlight on victims, the said official had stirred just the right hornet's nest, partly because such an unfortunate number of men believe that 'slutty' women are always up for sex.

With a mass epidemic of rape, mutilation and murder of women on its hands, India is handing out advice to tourists as they touch down. Controversially, they have told women not to wear skirts in small towns. They fear such women may be raped. Given the culture of some small towns, they might well be subjected to 'rape as punishment'. An example of this from South Africa, saw women trying to hire taxis being raped quite openly by taxi drivers, who claimed that women dressed in that manner deserved it, to teach them to dress in less revealing outfits in future. In truth, while women in miniskirts were turned into sitting ducks and easy targets, if it weren't those women who were raped, the taxi drivers likely would have found the next most societally acceptable victims for their criminal intents.

It all comes down to an old polemic.

Criminals are more likely to rob individuals who lift their feet higher off the ground as they walk, so authorities say to walk differently. Fidget much? You might be showing a high level of nervousness, a victim sign, perhaps? Research from a top university shows that people with ethnic names are less likely to get replies from a therapist, so should they change their names? A serial killer targets women with red hair: women should thus dye their hair blonde? A cult sacrifices virgins, so women, a certain logic says, should then stop being virgins, or pretend not to be? Friends claim that Catholics are evil, so a student pretends to be Anglican.

Human beings are adaptable creatures, we learn to adapt to circumstances, though sometimes that adaption is considered unwarranted, or a compromise of integrity and of self.

Rapists, according to statistics, rape for the fun of it, and are the sort of men who also have a lot of consensual sex, and frequent prostitutes. For them, rape is fun, a past time like watching the game or reading a novel. Rapists tend to target women that the rapists think they will enjoy raping, so women are told to dress in a way that makes them less likely to be a target? But rapists target more than miniskirts and tight shirts. Like all criminals, they look for victims they feel they can get away with wronging. The very things which also attract rapists, though, also tend to be things which attract ordinary men, potential husbands even. Who doesn't like a damsel in distress? Yet a woman who is vulnerable is a target both for saving by white knights on horses, and for forces of darkness.

Warning women not to dress in a certain way, and perhaps teaching them a posture and manner about themselves which says: don't victimise me, might well prevent those specific women from being the target of rapists, but those same rapists will simply target other women they think are target worthy, and standards of clothing change over the years. There was a time in our culture when a woman who showed her ankles was considered 'slutty'. Cause women in general to dress less revealingly, and those who are most revealing, will still be the most likely to stir many a man's fancy, and some of those men, might not understand the word no, or might relish in ignoring it.

The debate over what women ought to wear, and whether it is too revealing, is a cultural debate. No one would say that tribal women in the amazon are sluts because they go topless, but even in that sort of culture there is likely some sign of a woman who is more revealing than others. This debate, however, has very little to do with rape. Even if individual women are taken off the radar, others will still be raped. As a public policy matter, changing individuals away from the alleged victim profile for a certain crime, doesn't help reduce the crime, it merely changes who the victims are. India's government should not focus on keeping women from dressing in a manner that displeases some small town men: its focus should be on protecting victims, regardless of their attire. The duty of a government is to preserve order, law, and the safety of those within its borders.

What are your thoughts?

Thursday, June 16, 2016

No, people really don't need to warn you, to record your phone or personal conversations with them...

This might be a eureka moment for some, but covertly recording your own telephone conversations, or your in person ones for that matter, is not unlawful in South Africa.

The flip side is also true: if you don't trust someone not to record your conversations with them, don't say anything orally that you wouldn't want splashed across the front page of a newspaper, in writing.

Like the private Facebook message a certain now infamous High Court judge wrote several years ago, which someone unearthed when they saw an opportunity to promote their social media company, your personal conversations can come back to bite you ages after you forgot you even had them. Audio recordings of personal, private, oral conversations, have also, in the past, been used at court.

Those recorded warnings that you get when calling certain companies are done out of politeness, or otherwise due to it being the company, not the individual making the recordings.

In fact, telephone voice recordings are often enough 'discovered' (declared as evidence to be used) in litigation and are used in court, against unsuspecting members of companies or the general public. Some companies specialise in such a practise and make phone calls prior to litigation, in order to use the contents of the calls against the unsuspecting targets of their work. If what you say later on the witness stand contradicts what you said on the telephone, they might claim that you are unreliable, or changed your story.

While RICA bans third party monitoring outside specific ambits, it does allow a person who is not an officer of the law to record and allow others to listen in on their own conversations (those in which they are one of the parties). The Act also allows for recordings to be made of speech made generally to multiple persons, when the recording individual is within natural hearing range, such as where a person is party to a meeting in the board room.

What I am referring to is sections 4 (1) and 5 (1) of the Act, namely:

'(1) Any person, other than a law enforcement officer, may intercept any communication if he or she is a party to the communication, unless such communication is intercepted by such person for purposes of committing an offence.'

'(1) Any person, other than a law enforcement officer, may intercept any communication if one of the parties to the communication has given prior consent in writing to such interception, unless such communication is intercepted by such person for purposes of committing an offence.'

Other provisions of the act deal with when law enforcement officers may make recordings, but that is not the ambit of this article.

So, firstly, what does intercept mean in terms of the act?

In terms of section 1:

'“intercept” means the aural or other acquisition of the contents of any communication through the use of any means, including an interception device, so as to make some or all of the contents of a communication available to a person other than the sender or recipient or intended recipient of that communication, and includes the –
(a) monitoring of any such communication by means of a monitoring device;
(b) viewing, examination or inspection of the contents of any indirect communication; and
(c) diversion of any indirect communication from its intended destination to any other destination,
and “interception” has a corresponding meaning;'

'“monitor” includes to listen to or record communications by means of a monitoring device, and “monitoring” has a corresponding meaning;'

'“monitoring device” means any electronic, mechanical or other instrument, device, equipment or apparatus which is used or can be used, whether by itself or in combination with any other instrument, device, equipment or apparatus, to listen to or record any communication;'

'“indirect communication” means the transfer of information, including a message or any part of a message, whether –
(a) in the form of –
(i) speech, music or other sounds;
(ii) data;
(iii) text;
(iv) visual images, whether animated or not;
(v) signals; or
(vi) radio frequency spectrum; or
(b) in any other form or in any combination of forms,
that is transmitted in whole or in part by means of a postal service or a telecommunication system;'

'“direct communication” means an –
(a) oral communication, other than an indirect communication, between two or more persons which occurs in the immediate presence of all the persons participating in that communication; or
(b) utterance by a person who is participating in an indirect communication, if the utterance is audible to another person who, at the time that the indirect communication occurs, is in the immediate presence of the person participating in the indirect communication;'


That leaves need for the definition of a party to the communication, also in terms of section 1, that would be:

'“party to the communication”, for purposes of –
(a) section 4, means, in the case of –
(i) a direct communication, any person –
(aa) participating in such direct communication or to whom such direct communication is directed; or
(bb) in whose immediate presence such direct communication occurs and is audible to the person concerned, regardless of whether or not the direct communication is specifically directed to him or her; or
(ii) an indirect communication –
(aa) the sender or the recipient or intended recipient of such indirect communication;
(bb) if it is intended by the sender of an indirect communication that such indirect communication be received by more than one person, any of those recipients; or
(cc) any other person who, at the time of the occurrence of the indirect communication, is in the immediate presence of the sender or the recipient or intended recipient of that indirect communication; and
(b) section 5, means, in the case of –
(i) a direct communication, any person participating in such direct communication or to whom such direct communication is directed; or
(ii) an indirect communication –
(aa) the sender or the recipient or intended recipient of such indirect communication; or
(bb) if it is intended by the sender of an indirect communication that such indirect communication be received by more than one person, any of those recipients;'


c.f. REGULATION OF INTERCEPTION OF COMMUNICATIONS AND PROVISION OF COMMUNICATION-RELATED INFORMATION ACT 70 OF 2002

http://www.saflii.org/za/legis/consol_act/roiocapocia2002925/

This article does not constitute legal advice. For legal advice, consult your attorney, with all the facts of your matter, in person, and within the context in which such advice is to be deemed reliable and applicable to your circumstances. This article, while based on research of the law, is published purely for topic interest purposes, and cannot replace the advice of a properly briefed legal practitioner.

Thursday, April 28, 2016

Donald Trump didn't actually pronounce the word Tanzania incorrectly, when he called it 'Tan-Zane-Nee-Yah'.

Journalists love to butcher the language. Just a few years ago, the word 'terror' referred to an emotion, rather than to terrorism, a slightly longer word. Lately, media has set itself up as a watchdog on language usage, nonetheless. A favourite target is controversial and poorly spoken American politician, Donald J. Trump.

Most dictionaries give a uniform IPA rendering of the name of the African country known as Tanzania: /tanzəˈnɪə/. That is to say, following the American tradition of spelling out syllables: Tan-Zah-Nee-Ah (the 'ee' in the 'nee' technically being the 'i' sound in the word 'bit'). The blundering politician, The Donald Trump, called it /tanˈzeɪnɪə/ (Tan-Zane-Nee-Yah) in a recent speech, prompting media condemnation, and headlines about a 'zany' pronunciation. It also prompted me to feel slight surprise. In Africa, where I live, Tanzania is often pronounced /tanˈzeɪnɪə/, following the same manner as Trump pronounced it. I have always considered it one of several correct pronunciations for the word.

A quick Google search, followed by clicking through to travel and pronunciation forums and articles, reveals that /tanˈzeɪnɪə/ is a common pronunciation the world over, and is used in Tanzania itself, along with many other renderings of what is essentially a manufactured word. Whether you say /tanzəˈnɪə/ or /tanˈzeɪnɪə/, the meaning is translated, but more than that, a good portion of speakers recognise both as correct pronunciations, amidst others.

'The name "Tanzania" was created as a clipped compound of the names of the two states that unified to create the country: Tanganyika and Zanzibar' (to quote Wikipedia) i.e. it is a created word, rather than one which naturally developed. Both common pronunciations give the 'za' sound one which is not in the first part of the word Zanzibar (i.e. zæ). If we were to combine the two words with their sounds intact, we would speak of: /tanˈzænɪə/ instead.

Oxford Dictionary of English also references its origins: 'Tanzania consists of a mainland area (the former Tanganyika) and the island of Zanzibar. A German colony (German East Africa) from the late 19th century, Tanganyika became a British mandate after the First World War and a trust territory, administered by Britain, after the Second, before becoming independent within the Commonwealth in 1961. It was named Tanzania after its union with Zanzibar in 1964'

So, for a made up word, Tanzania sure creates some controversy. It probably is best to pronounce it as /tanzəˈnɪə/, which is how many dictionaries render the word, but on the ground level of real, spoken speech, /tanˈzeɪnɪə/ or /tanˈzænɪə/ are equally correct. You would have to be a pedant to declare otherwise.

Tuesday, April 26, 2016

A satirical piece: Why did the ANC charge Malema with high treason? Interview with the Minister of Labour.

The following piece is satire.

Not to trumpet my success, but I got an interview with Minister of Labour, Oliphant. Nelisiwe Mildred Oliphant is usually pictured as a queen size woman of African descent, with hair hanging to the bottom of her neck, and sun spots sprinkling her visage. The Oliphant I met, however was alabaster white, was a member of the species, Loxodonta africana, and had a rather large and delightful nose, which she moved about, eloquently, as we spoke. She was also a minister in the church of nature, and was undergoing labour at the time.

Q: The ANC recently laid charges of high treason at the Hillbrow Police Station against Julius Malema and the EFF. Why did your party do so?

A: He, Malema, said on Al Jazeera, my favourite TV network, by the way - that if the government violently quashed dissent, that the EFF would remove it by the barrel of a gun. Some people have said that that is speaking of a theoretical scenario, and therefore could not be taken as a serious threat of violence, after all, the government is not a dictatorship: we can't even dictate who our ministers will be, we actually get dictated to by figures such as the Gupta brothers in that respect, so we aren't a dictatorship. Would a dictatorship assign three ministers - myself included - to hound banks and demand they tell us and the Guptas why they broke up with them? No, a dictatorship would not care whether banks are doing business with foreign nationals. In any case, we are using violence to quell protests. We even use security forces to remove members of parliament from the building, so what Malema is talking about is not theoretical, and his suggestions that we have deployed the army to stop people stepping out of line are also true, so he should be charged with treason. I think Nelson Mandela would approve. In any case, we have wanted to brand him a traitor since he betrayed us by forming the EFF. What happened to his non-treasonous claim that he would kill for Zuma, whom Thabo Mbeki tried to remove... he betrayed us... Malema betrayed the struggle to keep Nkandla under wraps as well.

Q: You recently lamented that not enough board and executive positions are occupied by previously disadvantaged people, and said companies had six months to fix that before they faced you in court. Would you be upset if EFF supporters were appointed to these positions, and are only capitalists allowed?

A: We have charged the EFF and their leader with high treason. Appointing traitors or those who associate or sympathise with traitors to boards would not satisfy the ANC. A traitor isn't really a South African, and BEE is designed to benefit South Africans... and associates of the President from India, but currently in Saudi Arabia. So, it is best that companies appoint capitalists to bord positions. People like Cyril Ramaphosa... one man can occupy many board positions, and there are many ANC supporters out there who are prepared to do their civic duty and become executives of major companies, which might in turn gratefully pay the ANC money to use for elections, and for lavish parties.

Q: Some have accused the government of using BEE/EE as a front to empower the elite few who are already empowered.

A: Of course we are. We call it empowerment of the previously disadvantaged for a reason. It implies that the beneficiaries should not be those currently disadvantaged, like all of those people in the rural areas or informal townships. We were very clear that it is about being previously disadvantaged, not currently disadvantaged. Being currently disadvantaged should exclude you. We are not the EFF. We understand that the pie is only so big.

Q: What about the accusations that it has mostly been ANC connected figures who have benefitted.

A: Of course it has been. ANC figures are highly educated people. They grew up in the lap of luxury in places like the USSR and Great Britain... while crying daily over not being in South Africa, of course. How can you expect someone without an economics background to run a company. Our focus on executive positions, I think, highlights this as well. We don't mind what levels of EE exist at lower levels, because ANC leadership cannot occupy those positions - that's more of an EFF concern anyway. Are we worried if the Guptas are alleged to discriminate against black South Africans when hiring? No, of course not. Perhaps the EFF would care about those, if people elected them. And the DA, maybe they would do away with EE altogether, people shouldn't vote for them. We often tell people who have seen their lives worsen in recent years just that - if they happen to become currently advantaged and EE no longer exists, how will they benefit from it?


Q: You recently said that you were disappointed with EE in top industry positions. You said that while white people are losing their jobs, they are also being hired by other South African firms. You said that this meant positions stayed white, and that ideally the white executives would be excluded from the South African labour market, rather than being reemployed.

A: Yes, I did say that. We did something similar with white farmers. We encouraged them to give up farming in South Africa. When their farms were bought, they moved overseas to places like New Zealand and Eastern Europe, where their rare skills were cherished. It is a good thing too, now that South Africa is being forced to import food to feed its population. The presence of thousands of South African ex-patriots farming overseas, means that the overall price of food goes down, due to an increase in supply, and we can thus buy staple foods at cheaper prices. We hope something similar will happen to the white executives we want to exclude from the labour market: granted, some will sit at home and do without a job, or take up jobs they are overqualified for, but it is our sincere hope that many of these tough executives will leave South Africa for our major competitors' markets, and work to take our share of exports markets away. That way, the global market becomes more competitive. It's like when we made sure barriers to trade with China were reduced, destroying the local textile market of the time, in doing so, we increased global market efficiency.

Q: What is the relationship between Zuma and the Gupta brothers?

A: They call him their 'Number One', and he calls them each 'G'. They really are cheese boys though, all that high flying cash making they do... even a new deal with Denel to cut metal... I hear they are firing their own metal cutting team to hire the Gupta's firm to do it... that is reduction of government. That is efficiency. Right now it is a priority to have FNB and the other banks open Gupta accounts so that those upgrades to Nkandla can be paid for.

Q: Thank you for your time, Minister Oliphant.

A: Oh! Call me Minister White Elephant, I don't like Afrikaans at all. It was a pleasure. In fact, call me Auntie. I like phrases of endearment.

Friday, April 22, 2016

Suffragettes, civil rights, and a sea change in American currency... perhaps - but perhaps not.

The currency of the American people is set for much change. Treasury Secretary Jacob J. Lew has announced plans to accommodate calls that have harkened back most potently, during the current presidency, of Barak Obama, for the dollar standard to embrace diversity. In the past, women have graced American currency for short periods, before the resonance of the call faltered, but a sea change of redesign is in the works, and this time it might just stick.


Harriet Tubman is set to grace the $20 bill, though the late figure will have to wait until 2020... or, some estimate, 2030 or later (if paper money is still being used then, and if possible future treasury secretaries stick to the plan). The choice of a woman with the word man in her surname was not a subtle troll by the treasury department. Tubman, unknown internationally, in America, is a heroic figure in her own right, she is without doubt worth her salt to grace the nation's salt, they say. The treasury suggested that her name resonated strongly with the American public, and that the former slave was an obvious choice to immortalise upon a symbol of the unstoppable dreadnaught of amoral Western capitalist endeavour, the same dreadnaught which cleanly ran over her rights to build America into an industrial power, when it relied on plantation profits to gain a footing in a then all too uncertain world. Given research suggesting that the dollar became a world currency, and the early American state gained world status, by means of horrid things such as slavery, perhaps the presence of a slave on the bill is fitting.

She, a woman of black ethnicity, a union spy, a former slave and abolitionist, is set to replace the slave owning, Native American forced relocation masterminding, industry loving President Andrew Jackson, after fans of founding father Alexander Hamilton, and the treasury, vetoed a plan to replace Hamilton's $10 mug, for the move. The move is not without controversy, with figures such as aspirant next president Mr The Donald Trump strongly lamenting the move to get rid of Andrew, who he says is a very important icon to the American people.

While America's first treasury secretary, Alexander Hamilton, is not being evicted by the current treasury secretary's shakeup, the $10 note is still set to undergo extensive changes. The suffragettes: Lucretia Mott, Sojourner Truth, Elizabeth Cady Stanton, Alice Paul and Susan B. Anthony are set to replace a hitherto image of the treasury building, on the $10 bill. Amidst the suffragettes, Susan B. Anthony is not new to the party, she had been the visage of a short-lived $1 coin... until it went out of production.

Eleanor Roosevelt, Martin Luther King Jr. and African American musician, Marian Anderson, the treasury assures, will be on the new $5 design.


So, next time, while on holiday overseas - in a place that accepts dollars as much as the local currency, when you buy some cheap product, made in appalling conditions in a nation, probably in Africa or Asia, without many protections for a poorly educated, possibly underage, overworked workforce, remember, you can rest easy... and pay with dollars that represent the best aspirations of humanity: abolition, universal suffrage, civil rights, etc. Money, after all, is what you make of it... for better or for worse. And perhaps, this time, the potent symbols planned for dollar notes, will actually stay there beyond the good publicity of the press release. If not, they join the noble graveyard of previous attempts, occupied by the likes of silver notes bearing the face of Martha Washington, who the average reader will no doubt instantly recognise as George's dear and much beloved wife - who will not be gracing any of the new notes, as it happens. Perhaps with the next redesign she will, or are we jumping the gun about even the current bunch of changes making it to ink? To quote the french: je ne sais pas !

Monday, February 29, 2016

The new uniform, national rules, governing all attorneys in South Africa.

Effective as of 1 March 2016, the Rules of the Law Society of the Northern Provinces [LSNP] (issued in terms of the Attorneys Act 53 of 1979), have been repealed, and replaced with the new uniform Rules of the Attorneys' Profession.

The Rules of the other three statutory law societies (Cape Law Society [CLS], KwaZulu Natal Law Society [KZNLS], and Free State Law Society [FSLS] ) have also been repealed in terms of the same government gazette. The new rules are intended to govern all attorneys and candidate attorneys in the Republic of South Africa, regardless of which of the historic jurisdictions they practise in.

To quote the Law Society of South Africa (LSSA):

'The Rules for the Attorneys' Profession have been gazetted in Government Gazette 39740 of 26 February 2016 and come into effect on 1 March 2016.

'Historically, the four statutory provincial law societies have had four disparate sets of rules that apply to practitioners in their respective jurisdictions.

'Over the past few years, the LSSA has facilitated discussions and the process to unify the rules into one uniform set of rules that will apply to all attorneys and candidate attorneys on a national basis, irrespective of where in the country they may be practising. The uniform National Rules for the Attorneys' Profession were approved by all the Judges President and the Chief Justice in 2015 after being adopted at the AGMs of the provincial law societies in October and November 2014.

'The process to unify the rules of the attorneys’ profession took some seven years. The LSSA appreciates the ongoing support of all constituents, the level of debate and the fact that the interests of the profession and the public were prioritised in the process.' (Press Release | http://www.lssa.org.za/legal-practitioners/policy-documents/misc/uniform-rules-for-the-attorneys--profession )

The applicable government gazette, GG 39740 of 26 February 2016, which contains the new rules to which the profession is to be bound, may be viewed at the link:

http://www.lssa.org.za/upload/Rules%20for%20the%20Attorneys%E2%80%99%20Profession%20GG39740%20of%2026%20February%202016.pdf

Please see NON-GOVERNMENTAL ORGANIZATION NOTICE 2 OF 2016 on page four of the said gazette, which contains the new rules.

Sunday, February 28, 2016

Two Corinthians versus Second Corinthians: For most of the world, it's the former that's correct.

American politician, Donald Trump got up the ire of the American media, for referring to II Corinthians (written 2 Corinthians by the American standard) as 'Two Corinthians' /tuː kəˈrɪnθɪənz/. According to American Media, the correct pronunciation is 'Second Corinthians' /ˈsekənd kəˈrɪnθɪənz/. Thing is: most people in the English Speaking World say 'Two Corinthians'. At every mainstream non-American-based church I have ever attended, it has been referred to as Two Corinthians. You talk of 'Two Corinthians, Thirteen' for instance. Referring to 'Second Corinthians Thirteen' would likely have people asking whether or not you are referring to a second draft or a second serving.

In fact 'Two Corinthians' /tuː kəˈrɪnθɪənz/ is the correct pronunciation in British or received English. This is why most nations follow it. Perhaps the presence of a latin numeral 2 is behind the mass adoption of this, just as the Arabic numeral 2 might be behind the American convention.

Both conventions are a shortening, a summary of a book title. A stray example of such a practice can be seen in: Alice's Adventures in Wonderland, which is commonly shortened to Alice in Wonderland. We don't of course shorten it to Alice's Wonderland, although that might have emerged as a valid shortening.

In the case of Two Corinthians, the proper name of the letter is: ‘St Paul's Second Epistle to the Corinthians’ (based on Oxford) /seɪnt ˈpɔːlz ˈsekənd ɪˈpɪsl̩ tuː ðə kəˈrɪnθɪənz/. However, Americans might call it ‘The Apostle Paul's Second Letter to the Corinthians’, or just ‘Paul's Second Letter to the Corinthians’.

While we are at it, what about the Second World War? Many say it as: World War II /wɜːldwɔːˈtuː/. That itself hides the word: 'number': World War Number Two, but is perfectly correct as a reference term. In fact, it might be said using the word ‘number’ is entirely superfluous, in that case.

Wednesday, February 24, 2016

Which law firms are great to work for in Greater Johannesburg?

The legal profession in Gauteng province is a soundly sized one. It is certainly the most extensive and diverse in the country. The Greater Johannesburg Area is often seen as its centre. I live on Northcliff Hill, near 14th Avenue, so the profession in the Greater Johannesburg Area, including Randburg, Roodepoort, and Sandton, is the segment of the profession I currently have and in the future will have the most to do with.

When it comes to whether one of the plenitude of professional firms is a good, desirable place to work, there is very little reputational advice to go on. People say a lot about firms they think people should not work for, but there is very little advice out there on great firms to serve. I am lucky to have finished my articles of clerkship, recently, at a firm which was, and is, a pleasure to work at.

I will, in the next week, and going forward, be in the process of sending out my curriculum vitae for my first post admission experience, as an attorney, and I would like to have the opportunity of knowing a list of good firms to work at, firms to add to the list I will be e-mailing in order to apply for work as an attorney, work, probably with the job title of associate or professional assistant.

While I would like this to be a generally useful post to anyone who is reading it, I also know that some firms are great to work for because they are a sound fit to who you are, and what sort of experience you have. I will therefore give a short summary of who I am, below. Please either direct message/e-mail me (as most of you do) or leave a comment below this post, if you know of a firm which is good, or even great, to work at. Thank you all in advance for helping me find firms to add to the list I am sending my CV out to.

A short description of who I am:

I am an attorney, so admitted on 28 January 2016, and enrolled on the Roll of Attorneys for the Gauteng Division of the High Court of South Africa.

After graduating Bachelor of Laws (LLB) from the University of the Witwatersrand, where I had enrolled for, and passed, the maximum number of courses ordinarily permitted, I completed, with distinction, the Law Society’s School for Legal Practice full-time 6-month practical legal training course.

I gained much exposure to the law and to the day to day details of the practice of an attorney, during my articles of clerkship and also, prior to that, when I worked as a student counsellor at the Wits Law Clinic – in the final year of law school and during my studies at the School for Legal Practice.

I am pleased to have had the privilege of having served at two very different law firms during my articles, giving me a much broader experience of work in the profession.

This included exposure to both civil and criminal fields of law, as well as to litigious work and that of a preventative, anticipatory or administrative nature. Litigious matters, which I assisted in, included cases in the Magistrates’ Court, CCMA, High Court, and Supreme Court of Appeal, in addition to a multinational matter which went before the Arbitration Foundation of Southern Africa.

A deep interest in the law of South Africa, especially our constitutional and common law, has guided my studies and my career choice. I enjoy reading the material contained in our case law.

I am passionate about the place of my birth, South Africa, and am proud to be a patriot and citizen of this diverse and beautiful nation. I consider myself a global citizen and keep connections in a number of different nations across the world. Communicating with people from other cultures, I believe, has aided me to have a more open-minded approach in so far as how I see, and interact with, the world.

I believe success requires not just hard work but intelligence, perseverance, humility, integrity, ingenuity, diligence, a strong work ethic, and the courage to request the assistance of those better-versed in a matter, or field, where necessary.

The cultures and legal systems, morals and courtesy systems, languages, intricacies and religions of South Africa and of the nations of the world, are subjects I love to research. I enjoy reading and writing. To keep abreast with important events occurring in other countries, I find my knowledge of other languages, especially French, to be highly useful. I passed Afrikaans at a matric level. I took Zulu from grades 5 to 7.

I have advanced IT, programming, and computer proficiency, including an aptitude in the use of Microsoft Office, LexisNexis, Jutastat, Deedsearch, OmniPage, Power PDF, and the popular speech to text software: Dragon NaturallySpeaking.

I enjoy public speaking and debate, and believe that manners, appropriate dress for an occasion and courtesy are of very great importance. I enjoy hard work and like to throw myself entirely into solving a problem.

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A Lesser Instinct - A Novel by Marc Evan Aupiais (Our Editor)

A Lesser Instinct | Our editor Marc Evan Aupiais' first foray into the world of long form fiction. Read it without payment - on Scribd: https://www.scribd.com/doc/273964430/A-Lesser-Instinct

A Lesser Instinct by Marc Evan Aupiais