State Law Advisors Forum

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State law advisors gathered at the Interprovincial forum hosted by the Northern Cape Office of the Premier in Douglas on the 18 and 19 October.

State law advisors from various provinces and departments converged to share their extensive knowledge on successes and challenges experienced by state legal services units from across the country.

The Deputy Director General from the Office of the Premier, Ms Gugulethu Matlaponane, delivered the key note address, encouraging members to reflect on their role as a sector and its relevance to the broader South African community.

Matlaopane remarked that state law advisors should act lawfully and with integrity in advising state employees to reduce the number of litigation cases and thereby reducing the costs government has to incur in the process. “Every time cases are lost, government loses money. State lawyers should act ethically and stand firm under any pressure they are faced with.”

Issues of litigation cases were discussed in depth with solutions for ways to curb the number of cases by working with state employees on improving service delivery. The different provinces also discussed issues around the principle of following the departmental mandate and the specialised functions thereof in state advisors executing their tasks.

Matlaopane concluded, “Stay relevant and remain informed about the legalities of state decisions and laws that regulate issues. We can only improve ourselves armed with the outcomes of this forum’s expertise and knowledge.”