Nelson Mandela Foundation

17th Nelson Mandela Annual Lecture

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Constitutionalism as an instrument for transformation

The 17th Nelson Mandela Annual Lecture was delivered at the University of Johannesburg on Saturday 23 November 2019 by South Africa's Chief Justice Mogoeng Mogoeng.

South Africa's Chief Justice explored the theme Constitutionalism as an instrument for transformation when he delivered the 17th Nelson Mandela Annual Lecture at the University of Johannesburg's Soweto campus on 23 November 2019.

The Foundation is mindful of the fact that constitutionalism can be (and has been) utilised as a sophisticated instrument for protecting power, privilege and property. How can it become an instrument for deep and sustainable change? What is meant by justice and equity in 2019 South Africa?

Chief Justice Mogoeng is ideally positioned to speak to this theme. As head of South Africa’s judiciary since 2011, he has guided it courageously through the dangerous era of state capture and has insisted throughout that the Constitution be turned into a lived reality for all who live in the country.

The Nelson Mandela Annual Lecture is a unique platform to drive debate on critical social issues. Since its inauguration by Nelson Mandela in 2003, the Nelson Mandela Annual Lecture has been privileged to host as speakers the following global thought leaders and change makers: Presidents Bill Clinton, Thabo Mbeki, Barack Obama, Ellen Johnson Sirleaf, Mary Robinson and Michelle Bachelet; Nobel Laureates Kofi Annan, the late Wangari Maathai, Archbishop Emeritus Desmond Tutu and Mohammed Yunus; Dr Mo Ibrahim; Mr Bill Gates; United Nations Deputy Secretary-General Amina Mohammed; and Professors Ariel Dorfman, Thomas Piketty and Ismail Serageldin.

Watch the speech: 


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Mogoeng Official
Mogoeng Official
Mogoeng Official
Mogoeng Official