South Africa: The first class of the Pupillage Programme has commenced at the School of Military Justice (SoMJ) with ten students. Among the participating pupils in the programme includes members of the secretariat and the Defence Legal Services Division.
The Adjutant General of the SA National Defence Force, Major General Eric Mnisi, said the programme is the division’s contribution to the SA National Defence Force’s vision.
School of Military Justice is accredited by the council to provide Practical Vocational Training (PVT) to candidate legal practitioners for a period of three years. The training at the school affords members the opportunity to couple the theory and practice of law and its related concepts and the mastering of the dimensions of legal practice.
The Chairperson of the Pan African Bar Association of South Africa (PABASA), Advocate Baloyi-Mere, said they have partnered with the SA National Defence Force to run its pupillage programme. She said the association played a role in the drafting of the curriculum and ensuring that it was accredited by the Legal Practice Council.
She said advocates, through mentorship, give pupils practical training by allowing them to do drafting, observe in court and later assist them with standing up in court and addressing the judge.
The Chief of the SA National Defence Force, General Rudzani Maphwanya, welcomed aspirant advocates at the School of Military Justice during the inaugural opening of the Practical Vocation Training.
He said the school complied and satisfied all the required administrative and institutional arrangements. The division went through all the stages of approval from the Plenary Defence Staff Council and, subsequently, the Legal Practice Council in 2022.
The South African National Defence Force informed the public about the Pupillage training programme through their official handles by writing, “School of Military Justice starts Pupillage Programme.”
One of the users replied and told about his struggle by writing, “I’ve been trying to get into this division for years now and thought maybe it’d be easy since I’m already in the force, but that’s not the case. Maybe I’ll have some success in the civilian world.”