Section 173-180 Constitution of South Africa 1996

Preamble Section 1-6 [Chapter 1 – Founding provisions] Section 7-8 (Rights & Appilcation) Section 9 (Equality) Section 10-11 (Human Dignity & Life) Section 12 (Freedom and Security of the Person) Section 13-14 (Slavery, Servitude and Forced Labour & Privacy) Section 15 (Freedom of Religion, Belief and Opinion) Section 16 (Freedom of Expression) Section 17-18 (Assembly, Demonstration, Picket and Petition & Freedom of Association) Section 19 (Political Rights) Section 20-21 (Citizenship & Freedom of Movement and Residence) Section 22 (Freedom of Trade, Occupation and Profession) Section 23 (Labour Relations) Section 24 (Environment) Section 25 (Property) Section 26-27 (Housing & Health Care, Food Water and Social Security) Section 28 (Children) Section 29 (Education) Section 30 (Language and Culture) Section 31 (Cultural, Religious and Linguistic Communities) Section 32 (Access to Information) Section 33 (Just Administrative Action) Section 34 (Access to Courts) Section 35 (Arrested, Detained and Accused Persons) Section 36 (Limitation of Rights) Section 37 (States of Emergency) Section 38 (Enforcement of Rights) Section 39 (Interpretation of Bill of Rights) Section 40-41 [Chapter 3 – Co-operative government] Section 42-52 Section 53-63 Section 64-74 Section 75-82 Section 83-92 Section 93-102 [Chapter 1 – Founding provisions] Section 103 (Provinces) Section 104-114 Section 115-124 Section 125-132 Section 133-141 Section 142-145 (Provincial Constitutions) Section 146-150 (Conflicting Laws) Section 151-164 [Chapter 7 – Local Government] Section 165-172 Section 173-180 Section 181-194 [Chapter 9 – State institutions supporting constitutional democracy] Section 195-197 [Chapter 10 – Public Administration] Section 198-210 [Chapter 111 – Security Services] Section 211-212 [Chapter 12 – Traditional Leaders] Section 213-219 (General Financial Matters) Section 220-230 Section 231-243 (General Provisions) Schedule 1 – National Flag Schedule 1A – Geographical areas of provinces Schedule 2 – Oaths & Solemn Affirmations Schedule 3 – Election Procedures Schedule 4 – Functional Areas of Concurrent National and Provincial Legislative Competence Schedule 5 – Functional Areas of Exclusive Provincial Legislative Competence Schedule 6 – Transitional Arrangements Schedule 7 – Laws Repealed

Section 173-180 Constitution of South Africa 1996

Section 173, 174, 175, 176, 177, 178, 179, and 180 of the Constitution of South Africa 1996 (as amended), among others, are under Chapter 8 of the Constitution. Chapter 8 is titled ‘Courts and Administration of Justice‘.

Section 173 Constitution of South Africa 1996

Inherent power

The Constitutional Court, the Supreme Court of Appeal and the High Court of South Africa each has the inherent power to protect and regulate their own process, and to develop the common law, taking into account the interests of justice.

[S. 173 substituted by s. 8 of the Constitution Seventeenth Amendment Act of 2012.]

Section 174 Constitution of South Africa 1996

Appointment of judicial officers

1. Any appropriately qualified woman or man who is a fit and proper person may be appointed as a judicial officer. Any person to be appointed to the Constitutional Court must also be a South African citizen.

2. The need for the judiciary to reflect broadly the racial and gender composition of South Africa must be considered when judicial officers are appointed.

3. The President as head of the national executive, after consulting the Judicial Service Commission and the leaders of parties represented in the National Assembly, appoints the Chief Justice and the Deputy Chief Justice and, after consulting the Judicial Service Commission, appoints the President and Deputy President of the Supreme Court of Appeal.

[Sub-s. (3) substituted by s. 13 of Act No. 34 of 2001.]

4. The other judges of the Constitutional Court are appointed by the President, as head of the national executive, after consulting the Chief Justice and the leaders of parties represented in the National Assembly, in accordance with the following procedure:

See also  Constitution of South Africa 1996

a. The Judicial Service Commission must prepare a list of nominees with three names more than the number of appointments to be made, and submit the list to the President.

b. The President may make appointments from the list, and must advise the Judicial Service Commission, with reasons, if any of the nominees are unacceptable and any appointment remains to be made.

c. The Judicial Service Commission must supplement the list with further nominees and the President must make the remaining appointments from the supplemented list.

[Sub-s. (4) substituted by s. 13 of Act No. 34 of 2001.]

5. At all times, at least four members of the Constitutional Court must be persons who were judges at the time they were appointed to the Constitutional Court.

6. The President must appoint the judges of all other courts on the advice of the Judicial Service Commission.

7. Other judicial officers must be appointed in terms of an Act of Parliament which must ensure that the appointment, promotion, transfer or dismissal of, or disciplinary steps against, these judicial officers take place without favour or prejudice.

8. Before judicial officers begin to perform their functions, they must take an oath or affirm, in accordance with Schedule 2, that they will uphold and protect the Constitution.

Section 175 Constitution of South Africa 1996

Appointment of acting judges

1. The President may appoint a woman or a man to serve as an acting Deputy Chief Justice or judge of the Constitutional Court if there is a vacancy in any of those offices, or if the person holding such an office is absent. The appointment must be made on the recommendation of the Cabinet member responsible for the administration of justice acting with the concurrence of the Chief Justice, and an appointment as acting Deputy Chief Justice must be made from the ranks of the judges who had been appointed to the Constitutional Court in terms of section 174(4).

2. The Cabinet member responsible for the administration of justice must appoint acting judges to other courts after consulting the senior judge of the court on which the acting judge will serve.

[S. 175 substituted by s. 9 of the Constitution Seventeenth Amendment Act of 2012.]

Section 176 Constitution of South Africa 1996

Terms of office and remuneration

1. A Constitutional Court judge holds office for a non-renewable term of 12 years, or until he or she attains the age of 70, whichever occurs first, except where an Act of Parliament extends the term of office of a Constitutional Court judge. 

[Sub-s. (1) substituted by s. 15 of Act No. 34 of 2001.]

2. Other judges hold office until they are discharged from active service in terms of an Act of Parliament.

3. The salaries, allowances and benefits of judges may not be reduced.

Section 177 Constitution of South Africa 1996

Removal

1. A judge may be removed from office only if ­

a. the Judicial Service Commission finds that the judge suffers from an incapacity, is grossly incompetent or is guilty of gross misconduct; and

See also  Schedule 3 Constitution of South Africa 1996

b. the National Assembly calls for that judge to be removed, by a resolution adopted with a supporting vote of at least two thirds of its members. 

2. The President must remove a judge from office upon adoption of a resolution calling for that judge to be removed. 

3. The President, on the advice of the Judicial Service Commission, may suspend a judge who is the subject of a procedure in terms of subsection (1).

Section 178 Constitution of South Africa 1996

Judicial Service Commission

1. There is a Judicial Service Commission consisting of

a. the Chief Justice, who presides at meetings of the Commission;

b. the President of the Supreme Court of Appeal; 

[Para. (b) substituted by s. 16 (a) of Act No. 34 of 2001.]

c. one Judge President designated by the Judges President; 

d. the Cabinet member responsible for the administration of justice, or an alternate designated by that Cabinet member; 

e. two practising advocates nominated from within the advocates’ profession to represent the profession as a whole, and appointed by the President; 

f. two practising attorneys nominated from within the attorneys’ profession to represent the profession as a whole, and appointed by the President; 

g. one teacher of law designated by teachers of law at South African universities; 

h. six persons designated by the National Assembly from among its members, at least three of whom must be members of opposition parties represented in the Assembly; 

i. four permanent delegates to the National Council of Provinces designated together by the Council with a supporting vote of at least six provinces; 

j. four persons designated by the President as head of the national executive, after consulting the leaders of all the parties in the National Assembly; and 

k. when considering matters relating to a specific Division of the High Court of South Africa, the Judge President of that Division and the Premier of the province concerned, or an alternate designated by each of them. 

[Para. (k) substituted by s. 2(a) of the Constitution Second Amendment Act of 1998, by s. 16(b) of the Constitution Sixth Amendment Act of 2001 and by s. 10 of the Constitution Seventeenth Amendment Act of 2012.]

2. If the number of persons nominated from within the advocates’ or attorneys’ profession in terms of subsection (1) (e) or (f) equals the number of vacancies to be filled, the President must appoint them. If the number of persons nominated exceeds the number of vacancies to be filled, the President, after consulting the relevant profession, must appoint sufficient of the nominees to fill the vacancies, taking into account the need to ensure that those appointed represent the profession as a whole. 

3. Members of the Commission designated by the National Council of Provinces serve until they are replaced together, or until any vacancy occurs in their number. Other members who were designated or nominated to the Commission serve until they are replaced by those who designated or nominated them. 

4. The Judicial Service Commission has the powers and functions assigned to it in the Constitution and national legislation. 

5. The Judicial Service Commission may advise the national government on any matter relating to the judiciary or the administration of justice, but when it considers any matter except the appointment of a judge, it must sit without the members designated in terms of subsection (1) (h) and (i). 

6. The Judicial Service Commission may determine its own procedure, but decisions of the Commission must be supported by a majority of its members. 

See also  Section 24 Constitution of South Africa 1996

7. If the Chief Justice or the President of the Supreme Court of Appeal is temporarily unable to serve on the Commission, the Deputy Chief Justice or the Deputy President of the Supreme Court of Appeal, as the case may be, acts as his or her alternate on the Commission.

[Sub-s. (7) added by s. 2 (b) of Act No. 65 of 1998 and substituted by s. 16 (c) of Act No. 34 of 2001.]

8. The President and the persons who appoint, nominate or designate the members of the Commission in terms of subsection (1) (c), (e), (f) and (g), may, in the same manner appoint, nominate or designate an alternate for each of those members, to serve on the Commission whenever the member concerned is temporarily unable to do so by reason of his or her incapacity or absence from the Republic or any other sufficient reason.

[Sub-s. (8) added by s. 2 (b) of Act No. 65 of 1998.]

Section 179 Constitution of South Africa 1996

Prosecuting authority

1. There is a single national prosecuting authority in the Republic, structured in terms of an Act of Parliament, and consisting of ­

a. a National Director of Public Prosecutions, who is the head of the prosecuting authority, and is appointed by the President, as head of the national executive; and

b. Directors of Public Prosecutions and prosecutors as determined by an Act of Parliament. 

2. The prosecuting authority has the power to institute criminal proceedings on behalf of the state, and to carry out any necessary functions incidental to instituting criminal proceedings. 

3. National legislation must ensure that the Directors of Public Prosecutions ­

a. are appropriately qualified; and

b. are responsible for prosecutions in specific jurisdictions, subject to subsection (5). 

4. National legislation must ensure that the prosecuting authority exercises its functions without fear, favour or prejudice. 

5. The National Director of Public Prosecutions ­

a. must determine, with the concurrence of the Cabinet member responsible for the administration of justice, and after consulting the Directors of Public Prosecutions, prosecution policy, which must be observed in the prosecution process;

b. must issue policy directives which must be observed in the prosecution process;

c. may intervene in the prosecution process when policy directives are not complied with; and

d. may review a decision to prosecute or not to prosecute, after consulting the relevant Director of Public Prosecutions and after taking representations within a period specified by the National Director of Public Prosecutions, from the following:

i. The accused person.

ii. The complainant.

iii. Any other person or party whom the National Director considers to be relevant. 

6. The Cabinet member responsible for the administration of justice must exercise final responsibility over the prosecuting authority. 

7. All other matters concerning the prosecuting authority must be determined by national legislation.

Section 180 Constitution of South Africa 1996

Other matters concerning administration of justice

National legislation may provide for any matter concerning the administration of justice that is not dealt with in the Constitution, including ­

a. training programmes for judicial officers;

b. procedures for dealing with complaints about judicial officers; and

c. the participation of people other than judicial officers in court decisions.


See also: Section 165-172 Constitution of South Africa 1996

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