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Constitution of the Republic of South Africa (1996)

Constitution of the Republic of South Africa (1996)


We, the people of South Africa,

Recognise the injustices of our past;

Honour those who suffered for justice and freedom in our land;

Respect those who have worked to build and develop our country; and

Believe that South Africa belongs to all who live in it, united in our diversity.

We therefore, through our freely elected representatives, adopt this Constitution as the supreme law of the Republic so as to-

Heal the divisions of the past and establish a society based on democratic values, social justice and fundamental human rights;

Lay the foundations for a democratic and open society in which government is based on the will of the people and every citizen is equally protected by law;

Improve the quality of life of all citizens and free the potential of each person; and

Build a united and democratic South Africa able to take its rightful place as a sovereign state in the family of nations.

May God protect our people.

Nkosi Sikelel" iAfrika. Morena boloka setjhaba sa heso.

God seën Suid-Afrika. God bless South Africa.

Mudzimu fhatutshedza Afurika. Hosi katekisa Afrika.

Chapter 1

Founding provisions (ss 1-6)

1.    Republic of South Africa

The Republic of South Africa is one, sovereign, democratic state founded on the following values:

a.    Human dignity, the achievement of equality and the advancement of human rights and freedoms.

b.    Non-racialism and non-sexism.

c.    Supremacy of the constitution and the rule of law.

d.    Universal adult suffrage, a national common voters roll, regular elections and a multi-party system of democratic government, to ensure accountability, responsiveness and openness.

2.    Supremacy of Constitution

This Constitution is the supreme law of the Republic;

law or conduct inconsistent with it is invalid, and the obligations imposed by it must be fulfilled.

3.    Citizenship

1.    There is a common South African citizenship.

2.    All citizens are-

a.    equally entitled to the rights, privileges and

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