Position: Head of Department / Senior Professor
Tel: 021 959 3308
Francois du Toit teaches and researches in Succession Law and Trust Law. He is an NRF B-rated researcher in these disciplines. He is a former Deputy Dean of the UWC Law Faculty, and is currently the Head of the Private Law Department. Francois held a COIMBRA Scholarship for researchers from Sub-Saharan Africa and South Africa to the University of Groningen (2011); he was a research fellow at the Institute of European and Comparative Law at the University of Oxford (2013); he served as a member of an international peer-review committee for the evaluation of the Onderzoekschool Ius Commune, a research school collaboratively organised by the faculties of law of the universities of Maastricht, Utrecht, Leuven and Amsterdam (2013), as well as for a committee evaluating the Law Faculty of the University of Groningen (2016); he was a research fellow at the University of Melbourne’s Law School (2014); and he was a visiting professor at the Center of Civil Law Studies at the Louisiana State University Law Center (2016 and 2018).
- Francois publishes extensively on Succession Law and Trust Law. His particular research foci are (i) the impact of public policy and constitutionalism on freedom of testation; (ii) the rescue of formally-irregular wills; and (iii) the conceptualisation of the trust, in particular in mixed jurisdictions. Francois has published on these research themes in leading international law journals, including the Journal of Civil Law Studies (USA); the Tulane European and Civil Law Forum (USA); the Australian Property Law Journal (Australia); the Weekblad voor Privaatrecht, Notariaat en Registratie (Netherlands); the Rabels Zeitschrift für ausländisches und internationales Privatrecht (Germany); and the Oxford University Commonwealth Law Journal (UK). His scholarship is regularly cited by South African courts, among others in Minister of Education v Syfrets Trust Ltd 2006 (4) SA 205 (C); In re BOE Trust Ltd 2013 (3) SA 236 (SCA); and Harvey v Crawford 2019 (2) SA 153 (SCA). Francois is the lead author of Fundamentals of SA Trust Law, LexisNexis (2019).
- Francois is the South African correspondent for the Journal of Civil Law Studies at the Center of Civil Law Studies at Louisiana State University. He was also an invited participant in the LSU Law Center’s Distinguished Global Visitor’s Program (2018). He serves on the editorial board of the Tydskrif vir Hedendaagse Romeins-Hollandse Reg.
Position: Associate Professor
Tel: 021 959 3316
Bachelor of Laws, Enugu State University (2002)
Postgraduate Diploma, Nigerian Law School (2004)
Diploma in French, Makerere University (2007)
Master of Laws in Human Rights & Democratisation in Africa, University of Pretoria (2007)
Doctor of Philosophy, University of Cape Town (2016)
Anthony C. Diala joined UWC in 2018 from the University of Cape Town, where he was a University Research Committee Fellow in the Centre for Comparative Law in Africa. He teaches African Customary Law, Legal and Cultural Pluralism, and Private Law and the Bill of Rights. From 2014 to 2017, he co-convened African Law and Common Law for the LLM in Comparative Law in Africa at the University of Cape Town. Earlier, he convened Introduction to Human Rights, International Law, and Comparative Legal Systems in Madonna University, Nigeria. His research and postgraduate supervision interests are African customary law, legal theory, human rights, family law, and comparative constitutionalism.
Diala has over sixteen years of research and advocacy experience in sixteen countries spanning four continents. Aside the academia, he has worked in the International Criminal Court, the International Criminal Tribunal for Rwanda, the Foundation for Human Rights Initiative, Uganda, and the Justice and Peace Commission, Nigeria. He was managing editor of the Journal of Comparative Law in Africa, chair of the University of Cape Town Postdoctoral Fellows’ Association, and Head of Department, Jurisprudence and International Law at Madonna University.
Diala is the (non-residential) 2020 Diaspora Scholar at the Nigerian Institute of Advanced Legal Studies. Among others, he serves on the Law Faculty Management Committee, the African Studies Association Task Force on Academic Freedom, and journal editorial boards in South Africa, Kenya, and Nigeria. He is a facilitator for the Next Generation in Africa Fellowship programme of the Social Science Research Council of New York, a member of the RQ+ College of Reviewers of Canada’s International Development Research Centre, and a member of the College of Senior Mentors of the Council for the Development of Social Science Research in Africa. His research has received support from bodies such as the American Council of Learned Societies, the Nordic Africa Institute, the Social Science Research Council of New York, the Institute of International Education, the German Academic Exchange Service, and the South African National Research Foundation.
Peer reviewed book chapters
- (2019) ‘Courts and transformative constitutionalism: Insights from South Africa’ in SM Sterett & L Walker (eds.) Research Handbook on Law and Courts (Edward Elgar Publishing) pp. 95-104.
- (2018) ‘Legal pluralism and social change: Insights from matrimonial property rights in Nigeria’ in C. Rautenbach (ed.) In the shade of an African Baobab: Tom Bennett's Legacy (JUTA & Co.) pp. 155-174.
- (2013) ‘The dawn of constitutionalism in Nigeria;’ in Mbondenyi, M. K., and Ojienda T. (eds.) Constitutionalism and democratic governance in Africa: Contemporary perspectives from sub-Saharan Africa (Pretoria University Law Press) pp. 135-160.
- (2019) ‘Our laws are better than yours: the future of legal pluralism in South Africa’ 26 Revista General de Derecho Público Comparado pp. 1-23 [Link].
- (2019) with S Bagni ‘Introduction to special issue: The role of customary law in the shaping of new models of pluralistic states’ 26 Revista General de Derecho Público Comparado pp. 1-5 [Link].
- (2019) ‘Peacebuilding and the interface of state law and indigenous market laws in Southern Nigeria’ 64(1) Journal of African Law 1-26 [DOI].
- (2019) ‘Curriculum decolonisation and revisionist pedagogy of African customary law’ 22 Potchefstroom Electronic Law Journal pp. 1-37 [DOI].
- (2019) ‘A butterfly that thinks itself a bird: The identity of customary courts in Nigeria’ 51(3) Journal of Legal Pluralism and Unofficial Law pp. 381-405 [DOI].
- (2019) with B Kangwa ‘Rethinking the interface between customary law and constitutionalism in sub-Saharan Africa’ 52 De Jure Law Journal pp. 189-206 [DOI].
- (2018) with S Cotton ‘Silences in marriage laws in Commonwealth Africa: Women’s position in polygynous customary marriages’ 32(1) Speculum Juris pp. 18-32 [Link].
- (2018) ‘The shadow of legal pluralism in matrimonial property division outside the courts in Southern Nigeria’ 18(2) African Human Rights Law Journal pp. 706-731 [IBSS].
- (2018) ‘A critique of the judicial attitude towards matrimonial property rights under customary law in Nigeria’s southern states’ 18(1) African Human Rights Law Journal pp. 100-122 [IBSS].
- (2017) with JC Diala ‘Child marriage, bridewealth, and legal pluralism in Africa’ 4(2) Journal of Comparative Law in Africa pp. 77-104 [Link].
- (2017) ‘The protection of traditional cultural expressions in Africa: Book review’ 4(2) Journal of Comparative Law in Africa pp. 200-203 [Link].
- (2017) ‘The concept of living customary law: A critique’ 49(2) Journal of Legal Pluralism and Unofficial Law pp. 143-165 [WOS].
- (2015) ‘Lessons from South Africa on reform of the customary law of inheritance in Nigeria’ 3 Diritto delle successioni e della famiglia pp. 891-914 [Link].
- (2014) ‘Reform of the customary law of inheritance in Nigeria: Lessons from South Africa’ 14(2) African Human Rights Law Journal pp. 633-654 [IBSS].
- (2014) with LJ Udofia ‘Legal feasibility of a lawsuit against the United Nations’ 3 Madonna University Law Journal pp. 158-171.
- (2012) ‘The Arab uprising: Implications for self-determination and good governance in the African Union’ 1 Pan African Yearbook of Law pp. 19-30 [Link].
- (2012) ‘Realising the right to adequate housing in Nigeria’ 2 Madonna University Law Journal pp. 155-173.
- (2011) ‘Lessons from South Africa in judicial power and minority protection’ 1 Madonna University Law Journal pp. 164-187.
- (2011) ‘Victims’ justice and re-characterising facts in the Lubanga trial at the ICC’ 7 (1) Eyes on the ICC Journal 59-84 [Link].
- (2020) ‘Waiting to die?’ 76,000-word manuscript submitted to Penguin Fiction.
- (2018) ‘Editorial’ 5(1) Journal of Comparative Law in Africa pp. i-v.
- (2017) ‘The last president’ unpublished radio play.
- (2016) ‘Judicial recognition of living customary law in the context of matrimonial property rights in South-East Nigeria’ doctoral dissertation, University of Cape Town.
- (2013) ‘Successful marginalised group inclusion in customary governance structures and processes: Case study of the Osu people in Owerri South-East Nigeria,’ report for J Hedström and J Smith eds. Overcoming political exclusion: Strategies for marginalized groups to successfully engage in political decision-making (Stockholm, Sweden: International IDEA).
- (2011) ‘Security of human rights defenders in Nigeria’ in Strategie de Securite des Defenseurs des Droits de L’Homme: Experiences du Nigeria et de la Gambie (February) Report for the West African Human Rights Defenders’ Network, Togo pp. 28-50.
- (2011) ‘The strange child’ in J. Bassett (ed.) Oxford Bookworms Library: Stage 2: Songs from the soul: Stories from around the world (Oxford University Press) pp. 46-52.
- (2019) with S Cotton ‘Strange bedfellows: Legal positivism, pluralism, and access to justice under customary law in South Africa’ (28-29 October) Engendering Access to Justice for Development in Sub Saharan Africa International Conference, Nordic Africa Institute, Sweden/University of the Western Cape, South Africa.
- (2019) ‘The Constitution as customary law, or: the future of legal pluralism in sub-Saharan Africa’ (15-17 April) 6th Juris Diversitas Annual Conference: “Law, Roots and Space” Faculty of Law, North-West University, Potchefstroom Campus, South Africa.
- (2019) with B Kangwa ‘Rethinking the interface between customary law and constitutionalism in Africa’ (1-3 April) 2nd Biennial Law and Society in Africa Conference: “Africa and the Middle East in an era of Global Fragility” The American University in Cairo, Egypt.
- (2018) Panel convenor, Indigenous courts, commerce and (intellectual) property at the Biennial Conference of the Commission on Legal Pluralism: “Citizenship, legal pluralism and governance in the age of globalization” (17-24 August) Faculty of Law, University of Ottawa, Canada.
- (2017) Panel convenor, Identity, scholarship, and Africa’s next generation leaders, Biennial Conference of the African Studies Association of Africa: “African studies and global politics” (12-14 October) University of Accra.
- (2017) ‘Indigenous Market Laws in Southern Nigeria: Past, Present, and Future’ (10-12 July) 5th Juris Diversitas Annual Conference: “Law and Food” Université Jean Moulin, Lyon, France.
- (2016) ‘Judicial recognition of living customary law in the context of matrimonial property rights in South-East Nigeria’ (9-11 December) International Conference on Law and Society in Africa: “Dynamism, Liminality, and Reality? Policy, Research and the Law in an Afropolitan Era” River Club, Observatory, Cape Town.
- (2016) ‘What is living customary law?’ (1-3 December) African Studies Association 59th Annual Meeting, “Imagining Africa at the Centre: Bridging Scholarship, Policy and Representation in African Studies” Washington Marriott Wardman Park, Washington, DC, United States of America.
- (2016) ‘Judicial protection of women’s matrimonial property rights in Nigeria’ (30 May - 1 June) 4th Juris Diversitas Annual Conference: “Unity and/or Diversity” Louisiana University Law Centre, Baton Rouge.
- (2015) ‘Towards an adaptation theory of customary law in post-colonial societies’ (14-16 December) Biennial International Conference of the Commission on Legal Pluralism, ‘Normative Interfaces of Globalization and High-Tech Capitalism: Legal Pluralism and the Neo-Liberal Turn’ Indian Institute of Technology Bombay, India.
- (2015) with KA Maphalle ‘Customary law and intellectual property rights: The protection of indigenous knowledge systems in sub-Saharan Africa’ (14-16 December) Biennial International Conference of the Commission on Legal Pluralism, Indian Institute of Technology Bombay.
- (2015) ‘Implications of an adaptation theory of indigenous law for legal pluralism in Africa’ (2-4 June) 3rd Juris Diversitas Annual Conference: “The State of/and Comparative Law” School of Law, University of Limerick, Ireland, United Kingdom.
- (2019) ‘Legal pluralistic interfaces in the development of customary family laws in Nigeria’ (4-5 April) 22nd Annual Family Law Conference: Customary marriage updates The President Hotel, Sea Point, Cape Town.
- (2018) ‘The elders’ viewpoint: Shifting perceptions of matrimonial property rights in Southern Nigeria’ (26 October) Mandela and the Law Conference, University of the Western Cape, South Africa.
- (2015) ‘Towards a revisionist approach to African customary law’ (19-21 November) Humboldt Kolleg: “Modern Day Impact of Culture on Science: The Influence of Cultural Diversity on Theory and Practice” North-West University, Potchefstroom, South Africa.
- (2014) ‘Reform of the customary law of succession in Nigeria’ (10 April) Postgraduate Law Seminar, Faculty of Law, University of Cape Town.
- (2014) with A Ordor ‘The space between: Significance of a vertical theory of living customary law for development’ (17 October) Southern African Development Community/National Research Foundation Conference: “Interplay of customary law rights in land and legal pluralism” University of Cape Town.
- (2013) ‘The place of customary law in the Nigerian legal system’ (20 June) Postgraduate Law Seminar, Faculty of Law, University of Cape Town, South Africa.
- (2010) ‘Basic dissertation writing’ (May) Dissertation Seminar, Faculty of Law, Madonna University, Nigeria.
- (2007) ‘Strategies for realising the right to adequate housing in Uganda’ (November) Socio-Economic Rights Conference, Foundation for Human Rights Initiative, Kampala, Uganda.
- Visiting Professor, University of Hargeisa, Somaliland
- Member, African Studies Association (ASA) Task Force on Academic Freedom
- Member, International Development Research Centre (IDRC) Research Quality Plus College of Reviewers
- Workshop leader, Next Generation in Africa Doctoral Fellowship programme, Social Science Research Council of New York
- Member, College of Senior Mentors, Council for the Development of Social Science Research in Africa (CODESRIA)
- Member, Editorial Board, Africa Journal of Comparative Constitutional Law
- Member, Editorial Board, Journal of Comparative Law in Africa
- Member, Juris Diversitas
- Member, International Commission on Legal Pluralism
Tel: 021 959 3087
Her key research interests include the interface between the use of assisted reproductive technologies (ART) and various aspect of the law, on which she has published a number of articles. Other research interests include the recognition of wrongful life claims in the Law of Delict, teaching and learning and the future of legal education in South Africa. She is currently doing her PhD on the rights of prospective parents to engage in various forms of ART. Current research projects include the rights of prospective parents to decide on the quality of their future offspring and the rights of known sperm donors in respect of children born from their donations.
- Van Niekerk, C ‘Assisted Reproductive Technologies and the Right to Reproduce under South African Law’ 2017 (20) PER/PELJ 1-31.
- Van Niekerk, C 'When a relationship has reached its expiration date, does the same apply to the embryos under South African law? 2017 (38) 1 Obiter Law Journal 165-180.
- Van Niekerk, C ‘Strange (and incompatible) bedfellows: The relationship between the National Health Act and the regulations relating to artificial fertilisation of persons, and its impact on individuals engaged in assisted reproduction’ 2017 (10) 1 SAJBL 32-35.
- Van Niekerk, C ‘Section 294 of the Children’s Act: Do Roots Really Matter?’ 2015 (18) 2 PER/PELJ 396-427.
- Van Niekerk, C 'The Four-year Undergraduate LLB: Where to from Here?' 2013 (34) 3 Obiter 533-544.
- Van Niekerk, C ‘Wrongful life claims: A failure to develop the common law? 2012 (3) Stellenbosch Law Review 527-539.
- Van Niekerk, C and Mwambene, L ‘The Gumede Judgment: another lost opportunity to develop customary law and protect women’s rights?’ 2009(1) Speculum Juris 86-98.
Position: Senior Professor
Tel: 021 959 3320
BA, LLB, LLM, LLD (UWC)
Najma Moosa, Senior Professor in the Faculty of Law at the University of the Western Cape (UWC), has a career in academia spanning more than 30 years. She became the first black Head of Department, Professor, Dean (the first woman Dean of a South African Law Faculty) and Senior Professor in the Faculty. She is an admitted Advocate.
She has four law degrees. Both her LLM and LLD degrees were the first awarded at UWC, and the theses were the first to deal, respectively, with the Islamic law of succession, and constitutionalism and Muslim Personal Law (MPL). She has engaged in doctoral (at Yale Law School) and post-doctoral (at the School for Oriental and African Studies) research.
She is a National Research Foundation rated researcher. Her research milestones include drafting contributions to two South African Law Reform Commission Projects: on Muslim children (Project 110, 1998) and on Muslim marriages (Project 59, 1999-2003). She is the author of many academic articles, and of several first of their kind South African books: “Unveiling the Mind: A Herstory” (2004; 2nd edition 2011) on the legal position of Muslim women, a co-edited volume “Muslim Personal Law in South Africa” (2019) containing contributions on MPL, and “The Mystery of the Apostasy of Shaykh Yusuf of Makassar’s Alleged Grandchildren: The Children of The Rajah of Tambora” (2020) (in press) which is an investigative and literary work on a critical time in our history and tackling an important issue on the legacy of Shaykh Yusuf of Macassar.
She has given many high-profile lectures and presented at conferences, locally and all over the world. As a graduate-alumna of both the HERS-SA Academy and the American Council on Education (ACE) Fellows Program, she has received mentorships at, respectively, Wellesley College and Old Dominion University. She is the recipient of many teaching, research and community awards. She currently serves as a member of the Editorial Team of “Jurnal Syariah” [Shariah Journal].
In August 2019 she was a nominee for the inaugural Women in Law South Africa (WOZA) award for her excellence in academia. In October 2020 she was nominated by the Dean as ‘Top Achiever’ in the Law Faculty for the second edition of Digimag, an initiative started by the Deputy Vice-Chancellor (Academic) focusing on excellence of women academics and women leaders at UWC.
Tel: 021 959 2134
LLM, LLD (UWC),
I teach the Law of Contract, Advanced Law of Contract as well as Intellectual Property Law. My research interests cover the Law of Contract, Consumer Protection, Intellectual Property Law particularly Trade Mark Law, as well as regional integration.
- Towards an extensive statutory protection of consumers in timeshare agreements: A comparative perspective (accepted African Journal of International and Comparative Law, 2019)
- ‘The protection of intellectual property rights within the Continental Free Trade Area in Africa: Is a balance between trade and innovation possible’ 15/4 International Journal of Business, Economics and Law 15/4 14-21. (with van Huyssteen) ‘The statutory regulation of timeshare agreements in light of the need for greater consumer protection’ (2017) 3 Stell LR 657-678.
- ‘The protection of scent, taste and sound marks in South Africa: threats and possibilities’ (2017) 5 SAIP LJ 16-33.
Book publication. Title The Regional Integration of African Trade Mark Law: Challenges and possibilities by Galda Verlag Glienicke, ISBN 978-3-941267-11-4.
- ‘The relationship between restraints of trade and garden leave’ (2017) PER /PELJ 1-21.
- ‘Electronic signatures and non-variation clauses in the modern digital world. A case from South Africa’, (2016) 133/4 South African Law Journal 853-873.
- ‘African Union rising to the need for a continental IP protection? The establishment of Pan-African Intellectual Property Organisation' (2015) 59 Journal of African Law 1-24.
- ‘Fairness a slippery concept: The common law of contract and the Consumer Protection Act 68 of 2008’ (2015) 48 (1) De Jure 116-135.
- ‘Towards the harmonisation of trade mark laws in Africa: A comparative analysis of selected trade mark laws’, (2015) 2 (2) Journal of Comparative Law in Africa 98-126, peer-reviewed.
- ‘Exemption clauses and the Consumer Protection Act 68 of 2008: An assessment of Naidoo v Birchwood Hotel 2012 6 SA 170 (GSJ)’ (2014) 17/3 PER/PELJ 1167-1195.
- ‘The integration of trade mark laws in the European Union: Lessons for Africa?' South African Intellectual Property Law Journal (2014) 2 SALJ 109-130, peer-reviewed.
- ‘An analysis of the dispute settlement mechanism under the Consumer Protection Act 68 of 2008’ (2012) 15 (5) PER/PELJ 320-346. (with Brighton Mupangavanhu) Gcaba ‘The Minister of Safety and Security 2009 ZACC. Concurrent Jurisdiction now settled law?’ (2012) 23 (1) Stellenbosch Law Review, 40-54. (with Brighton Mupangavanhu)
- ‘Alignment of student discipline administration and design with national law and constitutional imperatives in South Africa’ (2011) 12 (2) Potchefstroom Electronic Journal
- I am affiliated to The South African Association of Intellectual Property Law and Information Technology Law Teachers and Researchers (AIPLITL).
Position: Associate Professor
BCom Law, LLB, LLD
- Maass S & Van der Walt AJ “The case in favour of substantive tenure reform in the landlord-tenant framework: The Occupiers, Shulana Court, 11 Hendon road, Yeoville, Johannesburg v Steele; City of Johannesburg Metropolitan Municipality v Blue Moonlight” (2011) 128 SALJ 436-451
- Maass S “Rental housing as adequate housing” (2011) 22 Stell LR 759-774
- Maass S & Van der Walt AJ “The enforceability of tenants’ rights” 2012 TSAR 35-52 (Part 1)
- Maass S & Van der Walt AJ “The enforceability of tenants’ rights” 2012 TSAR 228-246 (Part 2)
- Maass S “Rent control: A comparative analysis” (2012) 15 PER 41-100
- Maass S “Conceptualising a unfair practice regime in landlord- tenant law: Maphango v Aengus Lifestyle Properties  ZACC; 2012 5 BCLR 449 (CC)” (2012) 27 SAPL 653-671
- Maass S “The South African social housing sector: A critical comparative analysis” (2013) 29 SAJHR 571-590
- Viljoen S “The temporary expropriation of a use right as interim measure in the South African housing context Part 1” 2014 TSAR 359-376
- Viljoen S “The temporary expropriation of a use right as interim measure in the South African housing context Part 2” 2014 TSAR 520-535
- Viljoen S & Strydom J “Unlawful occupation of inner-city buildings: A constitutional analysis of the rights and obligations involved” (2014) 17 PER 1206-1261
- Viljoen S “The constitutional protection of tenants’ interests – a comparative analysis” (2014) 47 CILSA 460-489
- Viljoen S & Van der Walt AJ “The constitutional mandate for social welfare – systemic differences and links between property, land rights and housing rights” (2015) 18 PER 1034-1090
- Viljoen S “The systemic violation of section 26(1): An appeal for structural relief by the judiciary” (2015) 30 SAPL 42-70
- Viljoen S “Substantive adjudication of the decision to expropriate property” (2017) 28 Stell LR 444-465
- Viljoen S & Makama SP “Structural relief – a comparative analysis” (2018) 34 SAJHR 209-230
- Viljoen S “Property and ‘human flourishing’: A reassessment in the housing framework” (2019) 22 PER 1-27
- Viljoen S “Expropriation without compensation: Principled decision-making instead of arbitrariness in the land reform context Part 1” 2020 TSAR 35-48
- Viljoen S “Expropriation without compensation: Principled decision-making instead of arbitrariness in the land reform context Part 2” 2020 TSAR 259-270
- Viljoen S “A systemically correct approach in state evictions” (2020) Stell LR 201-225
- Viljoen S “The impact of the COVID-19 on rent obligations” (2020) De Jure
- Viljoen S The law of landlord and tenant (2016) Cape Town: Juta
- Viljoen S “Ownership under the new South African Constitution – addressing socio-economic injustices” in Van Kampen S & Milo M Recht en Armoede (2016) 31-60
- Viljoen S & Stydom J “Tenure security and the reform of servitude law” in Muller G et al Transformative property law (2018) 96-120
- South African Research Chair in Property Law alumnus
- Member of the Association for Law, Property and Society (ALPS)