n Law, Democracy & Development - Legislative and executive translation of the right to have access to health care services

Volume 14, Issue 1
  • ISSN : 1028-1053
  • E-ISSN: 2077-4907



The disconnection between the vision of social justice espoused by the 1996 Constitution and the lived experiences of its subjects presents probably the most significant threat to the legitimacy of the South African constitutional order. The justifiable socio-economic rights contained in chapter 2 of the Constitution, which were intended as tools with which to bridge this disconnection, are in danger of becoming its starkest examples. If they are to be of any relevance to the masses they were designed to serve, the constitutional rights of access to adequate housing, food, water, social security, education and health care services require effective and urgent translation from conceptually empty and contested "background norms" into concrete, claimable legal entitlements.

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