Is South Africa Experiencing some Threat to Judicial Independence or Necessary Teething Pains?

Neo Morei, Boyane Tshehla


The rule of law is a standard measure of the extent to which government upholds constitutionally and subjects itself to the laws of the land as well as international law. Its reigns over government, protecting citizens against arbitrary state action and protects individual/private interests. The rule of law ensures that all citizens are treated equally and are subject to the law rather than to the whims of the powerful. Law is applied indiscriminately irrespective of race, gender, religion or political persuation. The independence of the judiciary is inextricably linked to the rule of law. In order to have a proper judiciary there is a need of technical competence, commitment to sound ideas and institutional (and personal) independence. The judiciary should be politically insulated from the legislative and the executive power. That is, courts should not be subject to improper influence from other branches of government, or from private or partisan interests. It is therefore, the purpose of this article, to explain the concept of judicial independence and its basis, give a background of complaints of possible threats of judicial independence in South Africa and determine whether judicial independence is threatened in South Africa.

DOI: 10.5901/mjss.2014.v5n23p425

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Mediterranean Journal of Social Sciences ISSN 2039-9340(Print) ISSN 2039-2117(Online)

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