UKZN’s Faculty of Law was commended for keeping its standards high at a Business Breakfast Meeting hosted by the College of Law and Management Studies on March 11.

Deputy Judge President of the High Court of KwaZulu-Natal, Justice Chiman Patel, told the business and legal fraternity that he hopes that the Faculty continues to excel in its endeavours.  He made these comments during his address titled “The Bench, the Legal and Commercial Professions and Academia – An Indispensible Partnership”.

‘I hope that a partnership can be created between the stakeholders assembled here today as to how we can move this debate forward,’ he added.

Justice Patel said that the legal profession is regarded as a high status profession and is growing in popularity. This is shown by the large number of applicants for articles of clerkship. He added that the quality of training that these students receive will affect the level of service provided to the general public and to the business community.  He said that if there are challenges with the LLB degree these need to be ironed out quickly so as to prevent these graduates from entering the legal profession unprepared.

‘Having said this, I think it is important to say that the standards at UKZN remain high and this Faculty is to be commended for managing to keep standards high despite the ever-increasing pressures to which I have alluded,’ he added.

Justice Patel said that the most obvious skill that law graduates should possess is appropriate legal knowledge. ‘The acquisition of this skill is the direct responsibility of Law Faculties and they must ensure that those qualifying possess sufficient knowledge to advance to the next stage of their chosen career path,’ he added. He said that higher than average literacy skills, drafting skills and critical thinking skills are also necessary for successful legal practice.  He suggested the need for ongoing interaction between academia, the practicing professions and the Bench. author email :