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Constitutional Law Essay Competition Winners Announced

Sir Anthony Mason and Marie Iskander

The NSW Young Lawyers have announced the winners of its third annual Sir Anthony Mason Constitutional Law Essay Competition.

Announcing the winners at an award ceremony last month, the competition’s namesake, former High Court of Australia Chief Justice Sir Anthony Mason said, “I found it very difficult to make a comparative assessment of the top four essays. There was very little between them. Any one of them was worthy of selection as the best essay.”

First prize was awarded to UNSW student Marie Iskander for her essay Is Protecting Political Communication in the Private Domain Paradoxical? Second place went to Alice Wharldall from the University of Adelaide for Freedom of Political Communication: A Necessary Inquiry. The first and second place essays both explored the recent High Court of Australia decision in Monis v The Queen, which involved the sending of letters to the relatives of Australian soldiers killed in Afghanistan that denounced Australia’s participation in Afghanistan.

Living Trees and Parliamentary Sovereignty: A Critique of Rowe v Electoral Commissioner secured third place for University of Sydney student Jackson Wherrett, and Erin Richardson from La Trobe University placed fourth for her essay Momcilovic and Models for Protecting Human Rights in Australia.

This year’s competition attracted entries from New South Wales, Victoria, Queensland, South Australia, Western Australia and the ACT. “The essay competition seems to be gaining some traction and it is my hope that it will continue to attract more entries and generate more interest in our Constitution”, remarked Mason.

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