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The Constitution of South Africa is the supreme law of the Republic of South Africa. It provides .. Create a book · Download as PDF · Printable version. Feb 4, Constitution of the Republic 01 South Africa Amendment Act, No. 18 of Constitution of the Republic of South Aifrica Second Amendment. The highest law in the land, the Constitution of South Africa serves as the foundation for democratic South Africa, a country free of oppression and discrimination.

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South Africa's 'Final' Constitution is widely recognised as the crowning This book presents the South African Constitution in its historical and social. May 8, 1 (1) of the Citation of Constitutional Laws, (Act No. To introduce a new Constitution for the Republic of South Africa and to provide for. Jan 11, Constitution of the Republic of South Africa. To obtain a harcopy of the Constitution, please contact one of the following officials listed on the.

It enumerated a bill of rights for the people of South Africa. It described the division of South Africa into nine provinces , and established the structure of national, provincial and local spheres of government and the principles that governed the interaction between the spheres. It established a single independent national judiciary along with various other independent organisations to support democracy and the constitution. The Interim Constitution was drafted in by the "Multiparty Negotiating Forum" and came into effect on the day of the elections of It required the two houses of Parliament to sit jointly as the "Constitutional Assembly" to draft the text of a new constitutional text. This new constitutional text came into force on 4 February as the Constitution of the Republic of South Africa, , at which time the Interim Constitution was repealed.

This Constitution is the icon of South Africa's miracle, for it is the product of negotiations between political parties that were at war with each other not long before. It is also a political agreement between mandated leaders about what the most basic law in the land should be.

In a sense, the Constitution represents a discovery of nationhood because it reflects the soul of the nation. A journey through the history of this negotiation reveals a uniquely South African characteristic: South Africans tend to be suspicious of any process about which they have not been consulted, and as a result, the process tends to be as important as the substance of agreements.

More time and energy was spent on negotiating the process of arriving at the final Constitution than on negotiating the substance of it.

Legal dialogues

The most vigorous opposition, disruptions, and disturbances took place in support of demands relating to the process of drafting the Constitution, and were manifest even in high levels of political violence during the negotiations.

The experience of constitution-making revealed another South African characteristic: Despite their difficult circumstances, negotiators succeeded in finalizing one of the most advanced constitutions in the world with the greatest possible public participation.

These negotiations also witnessed some of the finest leadership in South African history; for when political violence and civil strife seemed to threaten the prospect of peace and democracy most, parties were able to prove the prophets of doom wrong.

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Constitution of South Africa

A history of Apartheid in South Africa Land: This day in History South African history timeline Pre s s s s s s. History Classroom Oral history guidelines Classroom activities: Learning about history. Educational sites for learners and educators Online directory - archives and media sources. Curriculum and Assessment Policy Statement Grades Section the right of access to information , including all information held by the government.

Section the right to justice in administrative action by the government. Section the right of access to the courts. Section the rights of arrested, detained and accused people, including the right to silence , protection against self-incrimination , the right to counsel and legal aid , the right to a fair trial , the presumption of innocence and the prohibition of double jeopardy and ex post facto crimes.

Section 36 allows the rights listed to be limited only by laws of general application, and only to the extent that the restriction is reasonable and justifiable in "an open and democratic society based on human dignity, equality and freedom. It lays down a set of principles requiring them to co-operate in good faith and to act in the best interests of the people.

It also requires them to attempt to settle disputes amicably before resorting to the courts. Chapter 4: Parliament[ edit ] Chapter 4 defines the structure of Parliament , the legislative branch of the national government.

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Parliament consists of two houses, the National Assembly the lower house , which is directly elected by the people, and the National Council of Provinces the upper house , which is elected by the provincial legislatures. The Chapter defines the principles governing the election and dissolution of the houses, qualifications for membership of Parliament, quorum requirements, procedures for the election of presiding officers, and the powers and privileges and immunities of Parliament and its members.

It lays down the process for enacting bills into law; different procedures are provided for constitutional amendments, ordinary bills not affecting provincial matters, ordinary bills affecting provincial matters, and money bills. Chapter 5: The President and National Executive[ edit ] Chapter 5 defines the structure of the national executive and the powers of the President.

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It provides for the election and removal of the President by the National Assembly, and limits a President to two five-year terms. It vests in him or her the powers of the head of state and head of government; it provides for the appointment of a Cabinet by the President; and it provides for the accountability to Parliament of the President and Cabinet. Chapter 6: Provinces[ edit ] See also: Provincial governments of South Africa Chapter 6 establishes the nine provinces of South Africa and defines the powers and structure of the provincial governments.

The boundaries of the provinces are defined by reference to Schedule 1A to the Constitution, which refers in turn to the boundaries of the metropolitan and district municipalities. In some respects, the chapter is a template which a province may modify to a limited extent by adopting its own provincial constitution.

The only province so far to have done this is the Western Cape. The chapter provides for a unicameral legislature , a Premier elected by the legislature as head of the provincial executive, and an Executive Council appointed by the Premier as a provincial cabinet.

The provincial government is given exclusive powers over certain matters, listed in Schedule 5, and powers concurrent with the national government over other matters, listed in Schedule 4. The chapter regulates the conflict between national and provincial legislation on the same topic, setting out the circumstances under which one or the other will prevail.

Chapter 7: Local Government[ edit ] Chapter 7 sets out a framework for local government.

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It requires municipalities to be established for the whole territory of South Africa, and provides for three categories of municipalities, whereby some areas are governed by a single "Category A" municipal authority and others are governed by a two-level system with a larger "Category C" municipality containing multiple "Category B" municipalities.

The municipalities are granted the power to administer certain matters listed in Schedules 4 and 5, and the executive and legislative authority is vested in the municipal council. The chapter requires municipal elections to be held every five years.

Chapter 8: Courts and Administration of Justice[ edit ] Chapter 8 establishes the structure of the judicial system. It provides for the appointment of judges by the President on the advice of the Judicial Service Commission and establishes a single National Prosecuting Authority responsible for all criminal prosecutions.

Chapter 9: State Institutions Supporting Constitutional Democracy[ edit ] Chapter 9 creates a number of other commissions and offices to protect and support democracy and human rights. Chapter Public Administration[ edit ] Chapter 10 lists values and principles for the administration of the civil service and establishes the Public Service Commission to oversee it. Chapter Security Services[ edit ] Chapter 11 establishes structures for civilian control of the Defence Force , the Police Service and the intelligence services.