n Comparative and International Law Journal of Southern Africa - O se re ho morwa 'morwa towe!' African jurisprudence exhumed
|Article Title||O se re ho morwa 'morwa towe!' African jurisprudence exhumed|
|© Publisher:||Institute of Foreign and Comparative Law|
|Journal||Comparative and International Law Journal of Southern Africa|
|Author||Nqosa L. Mahao|
|Publication Date||Nov 2010|
|Pages||317 - 336|
|Keyword(s)||University of South Africa|
The article is an intervention in the discourse around African jurisprudence and its relevance to contemporary post-colonial African society. It repudiates suggestions that African jurisprudence (botho/ubuntu) is unenlightened and inconsistent with the progressive values undergirding the South African Constitution. Drawing lessons largely from the pre-colonial 18th century history of the Basotho kingdom, the article explores how popular participation in that system was a leitmotif of democratic accountability. It lays bare a number of doctrines that abetted the efficacy, effectiveness and accountability of the political system. African jurisprudence also practised human dignity in a way that pulled into harmony formal and substantive justice. It contends that in African jurisprudence human dignity was indivisible. Political and civil freedoms were not separable from socio-economic rights. Finally, the article reviews how the doctrine 'O se re ho Morwa: 'morwa towe!' not only ensured respect and dignity of every citizen, but was also the anchor of social cohesion and harmony in a multi-cultural society.
Article metrics loading...