Meet the Moot Coaches

gift kgomosotho

Gift Kgomosotho began participating in moot court competitions in high school with the 2009 National Schools Moot Court Competition. During his time as a university student, he participated in the Kovsies First Year Moot Court Competition, the Philip C. Jessup International Law Moot Court Competition where he progressed to the White and Case International Rounds in Washington finishing 34th out of 120 teams. During this time, he won numerous awards for best oralist at national and regional rounds.

As a coach, Gift has coached teams which have participated in African Human Rights Moot Court Competition, International Moot Court in the Hague and the Philip C Jessup International Law Moot Court Competition from 2015 through to 2019. Some of the highlights of his time as coach of Jessup include coaching three teams which won the South African National Rounds, including awards for best oralist and best memorials, and coaching a team which placed in the top 16 at White and Case International Rounds and a team which placed in the top 5 out of more than 600 teams and won the Richard R Baxter Award for best Respondent Memorials at the White and Case rounds. Many of the speakers Gift has coached have placed in the top 100 speakers at the international rounds. The University of Pretoria is grateful for the role Gift has played in establishing a culture of excellence and competition within mooting at UP.


Sohela Surajpal now takes over as coach of UP’s Jessup team. Sohela was a part of the team that represented UP in the Jessup in 2018. Her team won the South African rounds, winning the awards for best oralist and best memorials too. Her team then went on to rank 5th out of more than 600 universities at the White and Case International Rounds. They won the Alona E Evans award for the 8th best Memorials overall and the Richard E Baxter award for the Best Respondent Memorials. Sohela was the top ranking speaker from UP at those rounds.

Sohela has also been a part of the UP Moot Society as the External Coordinator in 2018 and the Chairperson in 2019. During this time she has helped organise, judge and coach UP's First Year League, Internal League and organise the annual Lexis Nexis National Moot Court Competition.

She has also played an active role in debating, representing UP at numerous competitions including the Southern African National University Debating Championships and the Worlds University Debating Championships, coaching and organising schools debating tournaments and heading the Transformation and Equity portfolio of the UP Debating Union.

She is excited to continue UP’s legacy of excellence at the Jessup.