SAMUN International Conference 2015 brings bold, young voices to global conversations

A debating conference like none other, the South African Model United Nations (SAMUN) International Conference 2015 will see some of the country’s bright young minds go head to head over global issues, humans rights and international relations. Held at the Cape Town Metro Council on 12 Hertzog Boulevard from 15 October to 19 October, the winning teams from the provincial rounds will engage in debates based on the principles and format of the UN General Assembly.

 

Teams from Africa and a team from the United States will join the South African teams in the two debates. As part of the conference delegates will spend a night on Robben Island and will be joined by Deputy Minister of Basic Education Mohamed Enver Surty for the evening.

 

Having got to grips with the complexity of human rights and migration in the provincial rounds, these young diplomats will participate in two Model UN general Assembly debates, boldly tackling the issue of terrorism and the protection of cultural artefacts and heritage sites and the question of an anti-African bias in the International Criminal Court. The public is invited to watch these lively debates.

 

As in the provincial competition, each team participates as an allocated country, and as such familiarises themselves with that country’s social and political policies, cultural practices and the debates, views and stance on the discussed issues.

 

Unique to SAMUN is the twinning of resourced and under-resourced schools. Each team of four learners consists of two learners from a resourced school and two from an under-resourced school. Not only does this policy ensure that all participants have an opportunity to prepare and compete on an equal footing, but also promotes a cross-cultural exchange that encourages tolerance and understanding.

 

The first SAMUN was held in 1995 as part of the United Nations’ 50th anniversary celebrations. Following the South African conference, a group of delegates accompanied former President Nelson Mandela on his trip to New York for the United Nations’ 50th anniversary celebrations. Under the auspices of Education Africa, SAMUN has developed into one of the most credible Model UN programmes in the world, with over 500 South African high schools participating at a provincial level in 2015.

 

The SAMUN debates, chosen for their relevance, both globally and locally, are an exercise in developing research and communication skills, oral presentation and debating skills, and a keen sense of negotiation and diplomacy. SAMUN equips participating learners with skills, knowledge and experience that go beyond classroom debating and foster an interest in, and understanding of global politics, international relations and human rights issues. SAMUN has seen many of its alumni become leaders in the fields of law, politics, international relations, finance and medicine.

 

Winners of the provincial competition are as follows:

Eastern Cape – King William’s Town

Kingsridge High School for Girls & Hector Petersen High

Free State – Bloemfontein

St Michaels School for Girls & St Bernards School

Gauteng – Pretoria

Crawford College & Hoerskool Voortrekkerhoogte

KwaZulu Natal – Durban

Ridge Park College & JG Zuma High

Limpopo – Lebowakgomo

Dendron Secondary & S.J Van Der Merwe

Mpumalanga – Lydenburg

Mashishing High School & Skhila Secondary

North West – Potchefstroom

Ferdinand Postma High School & Potchefstroom High School

Northern Cape – Kimberley

Kimberley Boys’ High & Tetlanyo High School

Western Cape – Paarl

La Rochelle Girls’ High & New Orleans Secondary

 

For more information: Contact Tsholofelo Thema on 011 686 7300 or mail tsholofelo@educationafrica.org

 

For media queries, media accreditation, interview requests and to access high resolution pictures etc please contact JT Comms on media@jtcomms.co.za or 011 788 7632.

*PS There will be limited media access to the Robben Island event.

 

Issued by JT Communication Solutions on behalf of Education Africa – www.educationafrica.org

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