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Articles on Customary law

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Prince Misuzulu, second from the left, attends the provincial memorial service for his mother, the late Mantfombi Dlamini, at the Khangelakamankegane Royal Palace in Nongoma, in May 2021. AFP via Getty Images

What the Zulu kingship judgment tells us about the future of South African customary law

When judges, legislators, and policymakers neglect the foundational dynamics of indigenous customs, they worsen conflict between indigenous laws and state laws.
One of the problems with traditional courts is that they marginalise women. Rajesh Jantilal/AFP via Getty Images

South Africa’s efforts to fix traditional courts hit a snag

Denying people the right to opt out of the traditional court system conflicts with the notion of customary law as a voluntary and consensual system of law.
Country provides a site where Aboriginal and mainstream forms of law can come together and have dialogue – an outcome made possible by Eddie Mabo (L). AAP/NAA

Law reports push piecemeal changes to native title, but still fall short

The ALRC report made some useful recommendations about how settler law could deal more fairly with Aboriginal people by taking their traditions and customs into account.
South Africa is slowly transforming the retributive Western criminal justice system it inherited from colonial times to incorporate African principles of reconciliation and reparation. shutterstock

Why South Africa’s tentative moves toward restorative justice need support

The emergence of the restorative justice philosophy responds to the need to change South Africa’s retributive criminal justice system to accommodate African legal practices.

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