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Hennie van As is a Professor in Public Law and Director of the Centre for Law in Action (CLA). He teaches Constitutional Law. Van As, an admitted advocate, obtained the degrees BJuris, LLB (cum laude) and LLD as well as a Diploma in Police Science. He completed his LLD at the University of Stellenbosch in 1998 under the supervision of Professor Steph van der Merwe. His thesis is titled "Regsverteenwoordiging as element van regstoeganklikheid" (Legal representation as an element of access to justice). He also completed a post-doctoral research project at the La Salle University in Mexico in 2001. He has published widely in the field of legal aid.

Van As has written the by-laws of more than 60 municipalities in South Africa. The Centre for Law in Action has developed training courses for law enforcement by peace officers and environmental health practitioners, building inspectors, SANParks and forestry officials. The Centre has been presenting these courses to numerous municipalities and government departments since 2005. It also developed the first course on the investigation of health crimes. Prof van As developed and offered a training course for inspectors of ICASA. He is also very active in the field of municipal councillor training and the Centre has registered 10 modules that are offered to councillors, mostly in the Western Cape. The Centre received high praise for its work from the MEC for Local Government in the Western Cape. CLA is also accredited by the Health Professions Council of South Africa and its courses carry credits towards continuous professional development for municipal health practitioners.

He is also responsible for the Refugee Rights Centre at the university and has acted as Head of the Department of Criminal and Procedural Law. In 2008 he was appointed as a member of a work group of the SA Law Reform Commission to research the compliance of local government legislation with section 9 of the Constitution.

Prof Van As is a member of a number of associations and organisations including LETrainNET (Law Enforcement Training Network) International; Steering Committee member of PescaDOLUS which undertakes fisheries crime research and policy development as well as fisheries law enforcement and training; the International Legal Aid Group; the Environmental Law Association (provincially - EC, and nationally).  In June 2016 a memorandum of understanding was signed between the NMMU and the Norwegian Government, giving rise to FishFORCE, an Academy for the training of officials who are involved in the fight against fisheries crime has been established at the NMMU.

Further details pertaining Prof van As's  projects, nominations and awards, study tours and independent research abroard can be found by clicking here.




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