Freedom of religious association should imply that the state maintains neutrality towards the different religious groups without restricting religious activities or views. The way in which religious neutrality is applied in the United States entails that the state promotes anti-religious views to the detriment of religious views (e.g. in education). This should not be followed in South Africa. The procedure to ban political associations in terms of the Internal Security Act 74 of 1982 (as amended) does not take freedom of political association into account and it will be impossible to reconcile these measures with the proposed bill of rights. American law offers an excellent application of the principle that subversive, violent behaviour should be restricted rather than banning a political organisation because of unpopular or opposing views. The best way to maintain a balance between individual freedom and the interests of the community or state, is by establishing a constitutional court in terms of a generally-accepted, trustworthy bill of rights.
The present article considers the choice-of-law rules which apply to aspects normally referred to as the material and formal requirements for the validity of contracts, i.e. formalities, contractual capacity, existence of agreement and illegality. For this purpose, reference will be made to the method of ascertaining the proper law of an international sales contract in English and South African law, in the 1980 Rome Convention and in the Hague Conventions of 1955 and 1985. The scope of the proper law in these systems will then be examined to determine which law governs the particular aspects identified as relating to the validity of international sales contracts.
Among the more contentious topics of the constitutional debate underway in South Africa is the matter of entrenching property rights in a bill of rights. To understand the value of fundamental property rights one has to see them as the institutional means of resolving deadlocks over wealth distribution in a society in transformation. The constitutional protection of property rights reverberates throughout civil society and captures a vision of the essential values underpinning a nation's political culture. They depict 'the medium through which struggles between individual and collective goals have been refracted. A property clause is certain to be included in a bill of rights for a emocratic South Africa. Both the ANC and the Law Commission have published proposals in this regard. In this article the author examines the practical workings of property rights under a bill of rights and offer an alternative to the clauses recommended by the ANC and the Law Commission.
The potentially devastating consequences of uncontrolled waste disposal either to human health or ecological systems or both, have been graphically illustrated by a number of global and local incidents in the recent past. This article examines international law reactions to problems resulting from the transboundary movement of waste in the context of both Southern Africa and the African continent. But first some practical examples.
It is apparent that the legal system in the People's Republic of China is in a state of development and it can even be said that the entire system is underdeveloped but discussion and debate can take place freely. One must always keep in mind the traditional suspicion of lawyers and the unfortunate influence of the Cultural Revolution. Nowadays, however, lawyers are held in high esteem by the general public, mostly because of their attempts to improve the quality of human rights. In this they deserve the support of lawyers the world over.
In South Africa, three draft bills relating to women's issues were published during February 1993: namely one on the Abolition of Discrimination against Women; one on the Prevention of Domestic Violence; and one on the Promotion of Equal Opportunities. These bills will be discussed against the background of the government's proposed Charter of Fundamental Rights. 1 The South African Communication Services have stated that the new legislation forms the legal framework of the government's commitment to the abolition of discrimination on the ground of sex and its undertaking to protect women against discrimination. This draft legislation has been published to stimulate debate. We are asked to debate whether legislation should prohibit discrimination on the grounds of sex, marital status and pregnancy, which, it is pointed out,is in direct conflict with the principle of equality that will be included in a charter of fundamental rights; whether there should be equal pay for equal work; whether there should be equal opportunity; whether there shoulc be affirmative action, and so on. The article stresses that unless women should press their demands during the transitional period they will wait a long time for them to be addressed.
An issue that will have to be addressed in post-apartheid South Africa is the extent to which, if at all, tribal cultures and traditional rights to natural resources should be protected. In this article American 'Indian law' is considered to determine whether any lessons may be learnt from its evolution which may be relevant to environmental law and its development in South Africa, particularly with regard to the needs of our indigenous people in rural areas. American Indian law is a complex body of law, rooted in an historical background of colonisation, conflict, conquest, treaties, removals, relocations, and attempted assimilation. It is a body of law which 'has always been heavily intertwined with Federal Indian policy, and over the years the law has shifted back and forth with the flow of popular and government attitudes toward Indians'. It is a body of law that not only serves as a barometer of American attitudes toward minority groups, but also plays an important cultural role, in that native American tribal identity depends on it for continued existence. This article is a brief overview of the unique legal position in American society of the native Americans known as 'Indians', with particular reference to their original rights to the land and the harvesting of natural resources.
In this contribution the current legal developments in Ciskei, Namibia,South Africa, Transkei, Venda and Zimbabwe with regards to principal legislation, government notices and judicial decisions are briefly descriptionbed.