In a significant achievement, three students from the Faculty of Law at the University of Calabar (UNICAL) have emerged as African Champions in the 2023 Manfred Lachs Space Law Moot Court Competition (MLMC) and progressed to the World Finals, securing a spot as semi-finalists. The World Finals of the competition occurred at the Supreme Court of Azerbaijan on October 5, 2023.
The MLMC, hosted by the International Institute of Space Law (IISL), was held during the 74th International Astronautical Congress (IAC) at the prestigious Baku Convention Centre and Heydar Aliyev Center in Baku, Azerbaijan. The IAC is an annual gathering of global space experts, offering insights into space developments, networking opportunities, and sessions covering various space sectors.
The Manfred Lachs Space Law Moot Court Competition is renowned for its focus on space law and is named after H.E. Manfred Lachs, a former judge and President of the International Court of Justice (ICJ). It provides students with a unique platform to engage with public international law and space law, offering invaluable experience and exposure to a network of international lawyers.
UNICAL Students Shine in the 2023 Manfred Lachs Space Law Moot Court Competition
The competition began with regional rounds featuring teams from various global regions. Team UNICAL triumphed in the African Regional Finals, outperforming 17 other African universities, earning them the title of African Regional Champions. They then advanced to the Quarter Finals, facing off against the Latin American Regional Champions from the Universidad Nacional Autónoma de México (UNAM) and emerged victorious.
In the semi-finals, Team UNICAL engaged in rigorous legal arguments against the Asian Regional Champions from the China University of Political Science and Law. While they did not secure the top spot in the World Finals, Team UNICAL’s achievement as semi-finalists among 77 participating teams is commendable. They also received recognition for the Best Memorials for the Africa Rounds.
This accomplishment highlights UNICAL’s commitment to legal education excellence and its prowess in international legal competitions, particularly in space law. The winning UNICAL team consisted of three outstanding students: Felix-Uche Richard Chikeziri, Akpoiroro Victory Oghenekparobor, and Musa Omma-Agbon Zaiki.
The team profoundly grieves their dedicated coaches, Ms. Anne Agi and Mr. Owoche Antai, for their guidance and support throughout this challenging journey. They also acknowledge the contributions and encouragement from the Dean of the Faculty of Law, Associate Prof. Rose Ohiama Ugbe, and all the esteemed lecturers of the Faculty.
The team appreciates the Vice Chancellor of UNICAL, Professor Florence Banku Obi, for her leadership and support, emphasizing her commitment to academic excellence and student development.
This achievement underscores UNICAL’s position as a strong contender in space law and international legal competitions, showcasing the university’s dedication to nurturing exceptional legal talent.
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