First Published October 2014
Midlands State University Law Review
October 2019 Special Issue Volume 1
Official citation: (2019) 1 Midlands State University Law Review
Copyright © 2019 Midlands State University
Midlands State University Law Review is a peer-reviewed law publication committed to publishing articles on various legal issues in Zimbabwe, Africa and the rest of the world. The MSU Law Review is published by the MSU Faculty of Law. All rights are reserved. No portion of this Law Review may be copied by any process without the written consent of the MSULR Editorial Board.
MSULR Editorial Board
The Editorial Board comprises the following persons:
Prof S Mubako (Editor-in-Chief) Former Judge (High Court, Zimbabwe)
Dr J Tsabora (Deputy Editor) Zimbabwe Ezekiel Guti University
Mrs A Mugadza (Deputy Editor) Midlands State University
Dr R Kruger Rhodes University
Justice Chinhengo Former Judge (High Court, Zimbabwe)
Justice B Patel Supreme Court of Zimbabwe
Prof S Kamga University of South Africa
Mr. E Mandipa Midlands State University, Gweru
THE HERBERT CHITEPO MEMORIAL LECTURE ON SUPERIOR COURTS AND THE CONSOLIDATION OF THE RULE OF LAW
Honourable Mr Justice L. Malaba
It is a privilege and distinct honour to address this audience on a topic that relates to the very cornerstone and foundation of our Constitution in celebration of a great advocate and champion of the rule of law. This inaugural Herbert Chitepo memorial lecture is a way for us to celebrate our Zimbabwean intellectual heritage.
It is an opportunity to affirm the rule of law by reflecting on the contributions made to society by an outstanding lawyer. It is a moment that we can take to reflect on the intellectualism of Herbert Chitepo, a man who was way ahead of his time. We can reflect on his concerted efforts which brought about the freedom and equality which we now enjoy as fundamental human rights. It has allowed us to sit here in all of our diversity to celebrate this great man and the existence of the rule of law in our country. His immense contributions to our history and the current state of our constitutional values cannot be overstated.
He was a celebrated leader who transcended social, academic and political barriers. His achievements and legacy serve as a beacon of hope and stand deserving of the honour bestowed upon him by this University. The memorial lecture is an affirmation of the unique culture and heritage that produced
this celebrated and outstanding lawyer, who was committed to fighting for social inclusion for the marginalized and disadvantaged members of society. He left a legacy of responsibility to national values and social equity. A legacy that lives on, and which we still benefit from today.
Before we delve into the topic of this lecture and the consolidation of the rule of law, it is important to look back at the life and achievements of a man who championed equality and the rule of law many decades ago. It is only by taking a journey through history that we can fully appreciate where we are as a Judiciary and the role that the Superior Courts play in the consolidation of the rule of law. An assessment of the meaning and impact of the rule of law, which is the very basis of our constitutional democracy, and this memorial lecture must begin with a consideration of Herbert Chitepo’s formative years. We cannot fully understand what he stood for and the role that the courts have played in achieving democracy and upholding the rule of law without looking back on his life. It will be clear, that almost forty-five years after his death, the commitment to the rule of law remains as important to a young aspiring law student, as it did decades ago to the young Herbert Chitepo, fighting for equality and justice for all.
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