Legal Assistance Centre

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Legal Assistance Centre


From the Legal Assistance Centre's Website:

"The LAC's main objective is to protect the human rights of all Namibians. It is the only organisation of its kind in Namibia. It has a head office in Windhoek, Namibia's capital, along with two regional offices. It is funded by national and international donor organisations as well as individuals. Its work is supervised by the Legal Assistance Trust, whose trustees include legal practitioners, other professionals and community leaders.

It works in five broad areas:

The Legal Assistance Centre is a public interest law firm based in Windhoek.The LAC only takes on public interest cases. A public interest case is a legal case which will have a wider impact on the community than just assisting the individual concerned. Such a case may establish a new legal rule, which will change the law for the entire country or address a discriminatory policy or practice. Or it may attract attention to a problem that is affecting many people.

Examples of cases taken up by the Legal Assistance Centre include:

  • The right of a school learner to return to school after her child was born
  • The right of an accused in a complicated criminal trial to obtain legal aid
  • The right of a widow to keep the land she lived on during her marriage after the death of her husband
  • The right of a HIV-positive person not to be dismissed from employment based on their HIV status

Even if we cannot help you with your case, we may be able to give you information on your rights and on steps you can take to help yourself.

Legal Information and Advice
We provide legal information and advice on human rights in the following areas:

  • HIV/AIDS - including advice on what to do if you are discriminated against, information on workplace policies, access to treatment for HIV.
  • Gender Equality - including information on rape, domestic violence, sexual harassment in the workplace, inheritance, marriage, divorce and maintenance.
  • Human Rights and the Constitution - such as the right to basic education, the right to health, citizenship, immigration issues and the right not to be tortured or ill-treated.
  • Land, Environment and Development - including inheritance, conservancies, illegal fencing, environmental issues, and issues affecting especially disadvantaged groups such as the Himba and the San.

If you want to speak to a paralegal about a legal issue you are concerned about, phone us at +264-61-22-3356 or come to the office at 4 Korner Street, Windhoek. The office is open from Monday to Friday, 08h00-11h30, and 14h00-16h00.

Education and Training
We also run training workshops for communities and service providers (such as legal officials, traditional leaders, school principals, police and social workers) on:

  • Gender - friendly laws including rape and domestic violence
  • Communal Land Reform Act and conservancy-related legislation
  • HIV/AIDS and rights, including children’s rightsB
  • Basic human rights training


The LAC also carries out research, particularly on the need for new laws and the implementation of existing laws. Some recent research reports which are available are:

  • HIV/AIDS and Prisoners’ Rights in Namibia
  • Infanticide & Baby Dumping in Namibia
  • Land Reform: A look into Namibia's first court case on land expropriation

Law Reform and Advocacy

We advocate for law reform based on our research. Recent laws which the LAC
contributed to and advocated for are:

  • Combating of Rape Act
  • Combating of Domestic Violence Act
  • Maintenance Act
  • Non discrimination on the basis of HIV in the Labour Act

Free of Charge
All our services are free of charge (with the exception of litigation where certain costs may be recovered the client may be asked to contribute certain costs, depending
on the circumstances)."

This collection showcases some of the free-download books, briefings, and documents from the LAC in Windhoek.



© Legal Assistance Centre. Files directly from LAC website, all rights theirs

Collection Items

Different San groups share problems of poverty, powerlessness, social disorganisation and marginalisation. In any agrarian society, the problems of poverty and marginalisation are never far removed from those of land and land tenure. The Namibian San…

The “land question” is among the most difficult issues facing independent Namibia. About half of the agricultural land in Namibia is in the hands of about 3 500 whites, while nearly a million blacks live on subsistence farms in the communal lands.…

1: Robert Gordon, “Introduction: On the Perniciousness of Inheritance Problems” ................................................. 1

2: Thomas Widlok, “Take it or leave it: The post- and pre-mortal inheritance of San people in the Oshikoto Region”…

The charcoal industry is a fairly new industry in Namibia, being an innovative by-product of clearing invader bush. The industry grew significantly in the 2001–2010 period, and has now become an important economic sector. Its development as a…

At independence, apartheid policy was abolished and the new Constitution introduced the right of all Namibians to reside and settle in any part of the country. This provoked a dramatic increase of informal settlement in Windhoek, mostly around…

Namibia is home to between 30 000 and 33 000 San, who comprise less than 2% of the national population. As a language group they are conspicuously disadvantaged vis-à-vis all other language groups in Namibia on almost every available socio-economic…

This study on the San of Namibia has again brought to light the need for a more broad-based approach involving all stakeholders, through participatory democracy, a legal framework for the recognition and enforcement of the rights of indigenous and…

1. Overview: Gender and Sexuality in Namibia Suzanne LaFont ........................................................................................1 History: Colonialism, Christianity and Tradition

2. Making Tradition: A Historical Perspective on…

In 1990, Namibia emerged from colonial rule with a skewed distribution of agricultural land and high levels of poverty. The new government led by SWAPO Party initiated a process to address the land question within the first few months of…

In 1990, Namibia emerged from colonial rule with a skewed distribution of agricultural land and high levels of poverty. The new government led by SWAPO Party initiated a process to address the land question within the first few months of…

Two issues have been at the forefront of public discourse regarding commercial sex work in Namibia: HIV/AIDS and legal reform. Although there has been significant legal reform in other areas, the Combating of Immoral Practices Act (No. 21 of 1980)…

Firstly, while the land reform issue in Namibia is driven by the domination of primarily white-owned commercial farms in the centre of the country, almost half of the land in Namibia is communally owned, not privately owned. Virtually all authorities…

Large scale land acquisitions by foreign investors in Africa for agricultural purposes continue to capture attention worldwide. In recent years Namibia has received some proposals from multi-national agricultural corporations to develop large scale…

1. GENERAL APPROACH: We recommend that Namibia’s approach to inheritance should be to retain a dual system which incorporates the positive aspects of customary law whilst at the same time ensuring respect for all constitutional rights. As a practical…

Alcohol abuse is widely acknowledged to be a huge problem in Namibia, and there is a wide range of opinion on how best to address the problem. The topic is a broad one. This paper focuses on suggestions for strengthening provisions concerning alcohol…

Advocacy in Action is a 336-page manual designed primarily for non-governmental organisations (NGOs) and grassroots-based groups who are interested in increasing their advocacy skills. It contains concrete, practical information about advocacy…
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