Equality constitutional adjudication in South Africa

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This article focuses on the South African judiciary and, in particular, the South African Constitutional Court’s approach to the adjudication of the equality right in the Bill of Rights during the 20-year period since the official end of apartheid. The article does this by evaluating a necessarily select number of cases dealing with equality that have come before the Constitutional Court to find out whether the Court has consistently adopted a substantive notion of equality in its deliberations, an approach encouraged by the equality clause itself. The article offers some suggestions for both the South African Constitutional and others courts when engaging in equality rights adjudication. The article is a clarion call for the judiciary to adopt a contextual, robust and vigilant approach to equality and other rights adjudication.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)609-632
Number of pages24
JournalAfrican Human Rights Law Journal
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished (in print/issue) - 2014


  • human rights adjudication
  • right to equality
  • substantive
  • equality
  • equality adjudication
  • South African Constitution


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