Ramaphosa calls on SA public to help choose next Chief Justice

The term of the current Chief Justice, Mogoeng Mogoeng, comes to an end on 11 October.

Chief Justice Mogoeng Mogoeng. Picture: Abigail Javier/EWN

CAPE TOWN - President Cyril Ramaphosa is inviting members of the public to nominate judges for the position of the next Chief Justice of South Africa.

The term of the current Chief Justice, Mogoeng Mogoeng, comes to an end on 11 October.

The Constitution empowers the president to appoint the next Chief Justice after consulting with the Judicial Service Commission and the leaders of political parties represented in the National Assembly.

According to the Presidency, President Ramaphosa has decided that South Africans should help him choose the next Chief Justice, in the interests of transparency and public participation.

The Chief Justice presides over proceedings in the Constitutional Court and as the head of the judiciary, is responsible for establishing and monitoring norms and standards for all courts in the country.

Nominations must be sent by 1 October and should be endorsed by at least one professional body of legal practitioners or NGO involved in human rights or legal affairs.

A panel chaired by former judge of the International Court of Justice and UN High Commissioner for Human Rights, Navi Pillay, will shortlist three to five candidates. Also on the panel are Justice Minister Ronald Lamola and former Public Protector, Thuli Madonsela. It must report back to Ramaphosa by the end of October.

Nominations will be published on the Presidency’s website on 4 October. Objections can be submitted until 15 October.

All nominations, with all supporting documents, must be sent to angeline@presidency.gov.za and cjnominations@gcis.gov.za by 1 October 2021. They must include:

• A nomination letter, including the contact details of the nominator;
• The nominee’s acceptance of the nomination and their contact details;
• Letters of support for the nomination, including contact details of persons or entities that support the nomination, including at least one letter of support from a professional body of legal practitioners, non-governmental organisation working in the field of human rights, or other legal field; and
• Any additional documentation that the person nominating the candidate for Chief Justice deems relevant.

All nominations and supporting documents (save for personal information) will be made public on the Presidency website by 4 October 2021.

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