Transformation remains slow for women in legal fraternity: Mokgoro

SABC News Mokgoro Enquiry - Transformation remains slow for women in legal fraternity: Mokgoro

Justice Yvonne Mokgoro, the first black female Constitutional Court Judge says she continues to advocate for more women in the legal fraternity both in South Africa and internationally.

Statistics from 2016 showed 82 of the 255 judges across South Africa were women.

That is 32% of South African judges. This is a reality that Mokgoro says she and her peers are challenging and changing.

“We motivate women. we mobilise whenever there are adverts for appointments, we mobilise among strong women who we know that when they get there they will do the job just right.”

“I will have to stop sitting on the bench like am doing with Namibia supreme court, I’ve cut down with Lesotho appeal court. I chair several NGO boards. I chair the Sol Plaatje varsity council.

However young female lawyers say there are still many hurdles to advancement.

Commercial attorney, Refiloe Mahlangu says making it to the top requires blood, sweat and tears, especially for black women.

Mokgoro says a lot has been achieved in terms of female representation in the legal fraternity but more still need to be done.

Mokgoro says in 1994, she and Justice Kate O’Regan were the only two women judges out of 11 appointed at the Constitutional Court.

She says in those years the country only had three female judges.

Mokgoro acknowledges the landscape is different now but transformation remains slow.

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