From the 1st to the 8th of March 2014, Beryl Were(4th Year), Saweria Mwangi(2nd Year), and Mutugi Mutegi(3rd Year) represented the Kenyatta University School of Law (KUSOL) at the Jean-Pictet International Humanitarian Law (IHL) Competition held in Sintra, Portugal. This, the 26th Edition of the world-renowned Competition, brought together forty-four teams from universities and military academies globally, in a unique test of the teams’ knowledge of the law and ability to apply it.
The Jean-Pictet Competition, unlike most moot court competitions sculpted around an adversarial court system, places more emphasis on role-play and ability to relate to real-life situations placed within a fictional case study. This case study is created and developed during the course of the Competition by specialists in IHL, with its content becoming more complex as the Competition progresses.
This is the first time that Kenyatta University School of Law has had the opportunity to participate at the Jean-Pictet Competition, with each of the University’s representatives having previously participated in the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) National IHL Moot Competition. This served as an opportune moment to place KUSOL on the global map. i
The students´ International Humanitarian Law Lecturer, Nelly Kamunde appreciated the generosity of the International Committee of the Red Cross, Kenya Delegation, and the kindness of the ViceChancellor Professor Olive Mugenda in providing for the related expenses.
She also noted that experiences such as that presented by the Jean Pictet Competition, are indispensible in promoting exposure, and legal analytical skills. She hoped that Law Schools in Kenya will continue to encourage such initiatives.
Mutugi Mutegi says, “The opportunity to participate in the Jean-Pictet Competition is incomparable to any other university experience I have had so far. That one week of intense effort and focus is also one of the most enjoyable because of the format of the competition. As well, the hospitability and good nature of the jurors and tutors, and the diverse nature of all teams cannot be matched.”
Saweria Wanjiru admits that“the Jean-Pictet Competition changed my life. The exposure, the learning, the contacts I made in one week...these are three things that I would not have gained had I not attended the competition. Finally, my vision was enlarged, and my ability to work under intense pressure tested.”
According to Beryl Were, “The intense pressure emerging from being given a hypothetical case to analyse and apply the law, with a half an hour (or even less) to prepare for the presentation, taught me to learn to work under pressure; something I could not do before. The experience was just awesome!”
We as the KUSOL fraternity are proud of our colleagues in their achievements and continue to strive in nurturing wholesome legal practitioners through diverse learning mechanisms. We also look forward to training the next team from KUSOL to ensure that it wins, and does what we did not do