Award nod for PMB lawyer

2019-06-12 06:01
Pictured: Harshna Mung-Lee.PHOTO: supplied

Pictured: Harshna Mung-Lee.PHOTO: supplied

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LAWYER Harshna Mung-Lee has put the City of Choice on the map after being nominated for the 2019 Woza Awards.

Woza was launched on the February 28 at the Pepper Club in Cape Town and attended by industry specialists, lawyers, advocates, in-house counsel, academics and champions of gender equality from various sectors of the legal fraternity from South Africa.

Asha Singhania, one of the founding members of Woza, said that while there is a worldwide recognition of leaders in law, there are only a few countries who have embarked on awards to exemplify women in law.

“South Africa is new to the territory of a women-only stand-alone law awards event. There is a need to celebrate the successes of women in the profession and to close the gender gap in order to create greater gender parity and recognition. It is against this background that the need for an awards programme just for women was born. Woza is also dedicated to the establishment of an academy empowering female legal practitioners,” she said.

Asha added that the awards will be presented annually to women lawyers in recognition of their outstanding dedication, achievements and contribution to the profession — whether it be services, legal education, human rights or the pro bono sector.

“Woza awards share, highlight and recognise the challenges women in law face in all areas of lawyering. The awards foster a band of innovative next generation thought leaders and will empower, mentor and strengthen women lawyers to aspire higher,” Asha said.

Harshna Mung-Lee established H Mung-Lee & Associates more than a decade ago and has since garnered positive attention for her continuous support of young women, her community as well as enhancing the legal profession for aspiring lawyers.

“I established my practice with the main aim of providing affordable and accessible legal services to the community I grew up in. In saying this, I continue to support community projects and provide a legal advice desk for those in need.

Together with various organisations and groups, I have built a local awareness initiative on community issues and needs and we are at a stage where we need to impact outside the city of Pietermaritzburg at a national and even global level to achieve greater outcomes for those on the local front to be heard.

“Furthermore, while I maintain a strong business ethic and create job opportunities for youth and women, I do not abandon the needs of those who do not have access to justice. This is done not through the practice, but on a personal and individual level by me,” she said.

Mung-Lee was nominated for the 2019 Woza Awards for her continuous awareness campaigns as well as her strong commitment towards nurturing young women throughout the year. In the month of February each year, H Mung-Lee & Associates offers free legal advice on the winding up of deceased estates to pensioners, in memory of her mom who died seven years ago in February.

During August, Women’s Month, her practice offers free basic drafting of letters of demands to women to ensure that they are not taken advantage of as many have become income earners. In September each year, H Mung-Lee & Associates participates in National Free Wills Week initiative. Mung-Lee has been involved in Cell C’s “Bring a Girl Child to Work Day” drive for the past 11 years, and many of the young women who have spent their day at her practice have gone on to study a LLB Degree.

Mung-Lee had also volunteered her time to the National Association of Democratic Lawyers (NADEL) to co-ordinate, research and present legal workshops for the legal profession in Pietermaritzburg for many years, ensuring the profession is kept up to date on current legal topics, not necessarily topics that are for attorneys to profit from, but topics that build up the knowledge and educate humanitarian issues, creating an awareness and ensure change and justice for those that cannot afford to do so.

Mung-Lee said she was humbled by the nomination.

“It is our responsibility as individuals to create an atmosphere of giving back and helping each other for a better today, tomorrow and for our future generations to benefit from. I would like to thank everyone who has helped me to achieve my goals thus far and I look forward to what the future may bring,” she said.

The nomination process opened March 1 and closed on April 30.

For nomination categories, processes and further information regarding the Woza Awards visit www.woza.today The winners of the various categories will be announced at the inaugural Woza Awards Gala Dinner to be held August 3, 2019 in Gauteng with the venue yet to be confirmed.

— Supplied.

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