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Advocacy training for PNG lawyers

Papua New Guinea lawyers were recently trained in advocacy skills and techniques by Victorian Bar experts in a project facilitated through the Centre for Asia-Pacific Pro Bono (CAPPB). 
 
On 26-30 August 2013, legal professionals from the PNG Office of the Solicitor-General, the Public Solicitor’s Office and private practitioners undertook training  to improve their persuasive techniques. The five-day workshop was based on a similar course delivered to lawyers from the Office of the Solicitor-General, Office of Public Prosecutions and private  practice on 26-30 November 2012.
 
The recent course consisted of a combination of interactive general sessions, performance sessions in breakout groups and video reviews. Participants gained knowledge on analysis and development of case theory, instruction in specific techniques in advocacy and drills, demonstrations, communication skills in the court room and viewed advocacy videos. Performance sessions included giving a short performance, individual reviews in a group forum, video reviews of performances and repeat performance sessions. 
 
The CAPPB matched the request from PNG with four trainers from the Victorian Bar: Ms Caroline Kirton SC, Mr Gary Hevey RFD and Ms Kim Knights.
The project was also facilitated by the Australian Government’s Strongim Gavman Program, which is working with the PNG Office of the Solicitor-General to mentor and develop the individual skills of its lawyers in their litigation practice.
 
Secretary of the Office of the Solicitor-General Dr Lawrence Kalinoe officially thanked the CAPPB, the Victorian Bar and the Strongim Gavman Program in a letter and said the course had received excellent feedback from participants. Dr Kalinoe added  that “lawyers have come away from the course enthused to try litigation techniques and strategies that they were not confident in employing .”