LSSA welcomes appointment of Justice Raymond Zondo as Deputy Chief Justice

July 1st, 2017

By Barbara Whittle

The Law Society of South Africa (LSSA) welcomed the appointment of Justice Raymond Zondo as Deputy Chief Justice, as announced by the President on 7 June.

‘Justice Zondo brings 20 years of experience in the judiciary to the Office of Deputy Chief Justice. We offer the support of the attorneys’ profession to Justice Zondo in his new role as Deputy Chief Justice,’ said LSSA Co-chairpersons David Bekker and Walid Brown in a press release later that day.

The LSSA supported the nomination of Justice Zondo and recommended his appointment as Deputy Chief Justice in correspondence to the Judicial Service Commission (JSC) prior to his interview.

Justice Zondo served as a judge of the Labour Court and then as President of the Labour Appeal Court prior to his appointment as an Acting Judge of the Constitutional Court (CC) from November 2011 to May 2012. He was appointed as Justice of the CC in September 2012.

‘The Constitutional Court functions mostly as a Court of Appeal. To this end, the experience that Justice Zondo has obtained as President of the Labour Court and Labour Appeal Court has been invaluable,’ said the Co-chairpersons.

They added: ‘As Judge of the Labour and Labour Appeal Courts he handed down a number of judgments which shaped the development of a sound labour law jurisprudence for our country. During his leadership as President of the Labour Appeal Court, he was responsible for the transformation of that court in terms of racial and gender composition.’

In his documents submitted to the JSC for his interview earlier this year, Justice Zondo mentioned the challenges facing the country regarding the appointment of women to leadership positions in the judiciary. ‘We urge Justice Zondo to take concrete steps to ensure that women are appointed to leadership positions in the judiciary,’ said Mr Bekker and Mr Brown.

Barbara Whittle, communication manager, Law Society of South Africa,

This article was first published in De Rebus in 2017 (July) DR 15.