The Constitution still matters – former chief justice

2016-07-01 08:30
Former Chief Justice Sandile Ngcobo speaking at a HSRC public lecture in Midrand. (Iavan Pijoos, News24)

Former Chief Justice Sandile Ngcobo speaking at a HSRC public lecture in Midrand. (Iavan Pijoos, News24)

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Johannesburg – The Constitution has to address people’s concerns to stay relevant, former chief justice Sandile Ngcobo said on Thursday.

“For a Constitution to have a meaningful place in the heart, it must address the concerns of people,” Ngcobo said at a public lecture hosted by the Human Sciences Research Council on Thursday evening.

Corruption, racism, violent protests, the slow pace of service delivery, and access to land were all threats to the country’s constitutional democracy, he said.

HSRC CEO, Crain Soudien, asked whether the Constitution really mattered given the recent spate of violent protests, looting, destruction of property, politically-motivated killings, and racism.

It protected and safeguarded the country’s democracy, Ngcobo replied. It was accountable to South Africans and empowered people to evaluate the performance of the public representatives they elected every five years.

“The Constitution will only matter if we honour not just its letter, but its spirit. It will inspire generations to come,” Ngcobo said.

Ngcobo served as Chief Justice from 2009 to 2011.

Read more on:    sandile ngcobo
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