The South African Constitution is the supreme law of the country. The Constitutional Court approved it on 4 December 1996, though it only came in effect at the start of February 1997. With no other law being higher or enjoying supremacy above the South African Constitution, it is the epitome of the South African laws.
The South African Constitution forms the legal base for the rights and obligations of the country’s citizens. It, furthermore, gives validity to the Government’s structure and replaced the Interim Constitution of 1993. However, many amendments have been made to the Constitution since its inception in 1997.
Even though at minimum, 17 amendment acts have been applied to make changes to the South African Constitution, these acts do not receive numbers. The Constitution consists of the following chapters, each with its own categories:
- Chapter 1 covers the founding provisions.
- Chapter 2 provides details of the Bill of Rights.
- Chapter 3 covers the relationship of state organs on national, provincial, and local levels.
- Chapter 4 deals with the parliament as the legislative part of the Government.
- Chapter 5 addresses the powers of the president and the National Executive structures.
- Chapter 6 defines the structure and powers of the nine provinces in the country.
- Chapter 7 addresses the local government framework and roles of municipalities.
- Chapter 8 defines the judicial system structure.
- Chapter 9 addresses the institutions to cover democracy, including the state prosecutor office.
- Chapter 10 addresses the public administration principles.
- Chapter 11 sets the structures for state security, including civilian control.
- Chapter 12 covers the rights, roles, and obligations of traditional leaders.
- Chapter 13 deals with public finance principles, structures, and support.
- Chapter 14 covers general provisions.
It also contains a set of schedules, such as schedule 1, which describes the country’s flag, and schedule 2 covering the oaths that judges and political office bearers must take. Schedule 7 covers repealed laws.
With it being the highest law of the country, it often forms the focus of law studies and research. Whether you need to do research in preparation for a court case, appeal to the Constitutional Court, or complete a Master’s thesis, you will appreciate the comprehensiveness of our online collection.
The comprehensive collection of publications includes numerous law journal titles and full-text articles. Some examples of relevant journal titles are briefly noted below.
Published by the Institute for Democracy, Governance, Peace and Development in Africa, the quarterly peer-reviewed and inter-disciplinary journal contains essays, notes, book reviews, articles, and editorials on the topics of governance, democracy, and peace development on the continent. It provides a platform for discussions, and a repository of high-quality academic work relevant to the development of peace, governance, and democracy. The journal is published in English and French. The title was listed among the journals approved by the Norwegian List of Accredited Journals in October 2017. It is also accredited by the Department of Higher Education and Training (DHET). Our collection includes everything from Volume 1, Issue 1 of 2014 to the present.
Published by the Institute for Security Studies, the papers are published on an irregular basis and the publication in its original form is now inactive. The papers are available in several other reports, including the Africa Report and South Africa Report. The papers provide a credible platform for research in progress. Our collection includes everything from Issue 1 of February 1996 to the present. Even though the publication is no longer active, it is continued by several reports as mentioned earlier. Use the search facility to find full-text articles in the above and many other journals forming part of the collection for research on the South African Constitution.