Raising standards in the African legal profession: ALSF Academy is launched at East African Law Society Annual Conference

Entebbe, Uganda, November 19, 2017 —The last decade has witnessed, for the African Legal Support Facility (ALSF), two converging trends which promise to transform capacity building in the legal discipline: The growing availability of broadband connections in the African region, and the expanding recognition of remote-learning as an effective means of knowledge-sharing. With these developments in mind, the ALSF has leveraged its vast experience in capacity building projects to design a robust e-learning platform which will offer a three-level certification program to aspiring African lawyers: The ALSF Academy.  

The ALSF Academy is being developed by the ALSF in collaboration with the East African Law Society, the Southern Africa Development Community Law Association (SADC-LA), and the International Training Centre in Africa for Francophone Lawyers (CIFAF). The Academy was launched by the President of Uganda H.E Yoweri Museveni.

"The ALSF, in collaboration with its partners, has designed a pan-African skills-enhancement program for African lawyers, called the ALSF Academy Project," explained ALSF Director Stephen Karangizi, during his opening remarks at the 2017 East African Law Society Annual Conference, held in Entebbe, Uganda from 15-18 November. 

"The ALSF Academy will develop high quality and sustainable training programs in key sectors for African government officials and lawyers; and will develop knowledge management tools in those sectors," Director Karangizi continued.

Established in part to “strengthen the legal expertise and negotiating capacities” of African governments, the African Legal Support Facility has launched dozens of capacity building projects throughout the region since 2010. However, in implementing these projects, the Facility’s staff have identified an emerging need to harness new technologies in order to efficiently build, retain, and disseminate knowledge to its beneficiaries and partners. On the basis of these needs, among others, the ALSF has sought to dramatically reassess its approach to capacity building. 

The ALSF Academy will include an accreditation process that will enable users to upgrade their skills from basic to advanced, as proof of having acquired the necessary skills. 

As with other “open educational resources” (OERs), ALSF Academy will be freely-accessible via the Internet, and will include a three-stage accreditation process which will endorse and attest to the competencies of successful users. In addition to the courses themselves—which will be designed in collaboration with partner institutions from across the continent—the Academy will offer a ‘Capacity Building Portal’ replete with learning tools and documentation sourced from within the ALSF’s library of knowledge products. 

For more information, see http://www.aflsf.org.

Contact: Omar Yusuf, Communications Officer, African Legal Support Facility, o.yusuf@afdb.org