People & News

Legal services charter

A Legal Services Charter is to be launched soon by the Justice and Constitutional Development Department to address "glaring" inequalities in the legal sector. Included in the charter's aims will be to address discrimination and facilitate empowerment for the historically disadvantaged, especially female lawyers. However, the draft document will not contain targets and scorecards "because we still have to consult widely with all stakeholders before deciding on such", according to Director-General Menzi Simelane.

Out of 214 judges in South Africa, only 30 are female. Yet the past five years has seen a marked increase in the number of women entering the legal profession. According to the Law Society of South Africa, of the 22 000 lawyers in South Africa, 4601 are women. Des Williams, chairman of Werksmans Attorneys, said that female law graduates tended to perform better than their male counterparts at university, and that they no longer primarily practised in the "soft areas" of law such as conveyancing and family matters. There were many competent women lawyers practising commercial and competition law, he said.

Full articles on and

Leave a comment:

Security Picture (click to change)
Word shown in picture:
menu close

Search Articles