n Annual Survey of South African Law - Bill of rights jurisprudence

Volume 2006, Issue 1
  • ISSN : 0376-4605



Section 7(2) of the Constitution of the Republic of South Africa, 1996 obliges government to 'respect, protect, promote and fulfil the rights in the Bill of Rights'. 2006 (4) SA 114 (C) (also discussed in the chapters on Administrative Law and Public International Law) is a case dealing with Congolese citizens who were seeking asylum in South Africa but who were faced with policies and practices adopted by the Department of Home Affairs which denied them a proper opportunity to submit applications for asylum and refugee status. Van Reenen J emphasised that the duty imposed by s 7(2) means that '[t]he State ... is obliged to respect the basic human rights of any foreigner who has entered its territory, and any such person is under the South African Constitution, entitled to all the fundamental rights entrenched in the Bill of Rights, save those expressly limited to South African citizens' (para 28).

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