Quote of the week

[Venezuelan President Nicolás Maduro] possesses, however, few of his predecessor’s resources, lacking not just oil revenue but Chávez’s surplus of charisma, humour and political skill. Maduro, unable to end the crisis, has increasingly sided with the privileged classes against the masses; his security forces are regularly dispatched into barrios to repress militants under the guise of fighting crime. Having lost its majority in Congress, the government, fearing it can’t win at the polls the way Chávez did, cancelled gubernatorial elections that had been set for December last year (though they now appear to be on again). Maduro has convened an assembly to write a new constitution, supposedly with the objective of institutionalising the power of social movements, though it is unlikely to lessen the country’s polarisation.

Greg Grandin
London Review of Books
20 October 2009

Call for Papers or Participation – Legal Challenges to Regional Co-operation: The African and European Perspectives

Call For Papers or Participation

We are pleased to announce that the Faculties of Law of the University of Tilburg, Netherlands, and North West University, South Africa, are presenting a one day seminar on Legal Challenges to Regional Co-operation: The African and European Perspectives from 8:30 – 16:00 on Friday 15 January 2010 in the Council Chambers, Institutional Office, North West University, Hoffman Street, Potchefstroom, South Africa.

The purpose of the seminar is to compare experiences in the African Union and European Union and identify legal challenges facing each of these institutions. Possible sub-themes are: Institutional structures Regional local government co-operation Human Rights protection Co-operation in law enforcement and criminal justice systems Regional environmental co-operation.

Academics and practitioners are invited to attend and participate. There will be no registration fee. Tea, coffee and lunch will be provided. Participants are responsible for their own travel and accommodation arrangements. There will be three or four panels and three papers per panel to give presenters and discussants adequate time for constructive engagement. Participants are requested to focus their papers and address the seminar theme. In addition to the general call for individual papers, proposals for panels will also be welcomed. The sub-themes are merely suggestions and all proposals on the main theme will be considered.

Abstracts for papers should please be sent to Professor Stephen de la Harpe (stephen.delaharpe@nwu.ac.za) by Friday, 27 November 2009.

Each presenter will be granted a maximum of twenty minutes for their presentation. A computer and LCD projector are available and presenters who wish to use Microsoft Powerpoint slides to present their papers should save their slides onto a USB drive for this purpose.

Participants are requested to complete the registration form on the next page. Please e-mail this form to stephanie.kotze@nwu.ac.za or fax it to +27 (0)18 299 1923 (for attention: Mrs. S Kotze) by 15 December 2009.

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