South Africa has nominated the first female president of the second highest court , Madam Justice Mandisa Muriel Lindelwa Maya as the President of the Supreme Court of Appeal. This nomination could not have come at a better time, the month of March celebrates women for just who they are, their achievements and their contributions to the world, whether big or small. We say congratulations to Madam Maya, you have made women and Africa proud!

52 year old Justice Maya will fill the vacancy that occurred due to the departure of Justice Lex Mpati. Maya is currently deputy president of the court, which hogged the limelight for upgrading Oscar Pistorius’ from manslaughter to murder.

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According to the Constitution, the President of the Supreme Court of Appeal is appointed by the President after consultation with the Judicial Service Commission (JSC). President Zuma informed the chairperson of the JSC, Chief Justice Mogoeng Mogoeng, about his decision to nominate Justice Maya as President of the Supreme Court of Appeal.

Her appointment will have to be confirmed by the Judicial Service Commission, a 23-member body that includes the chief justice, minister of justice and lawmakers.

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In her CV, Justice Maya says she began as an attorney’s clerk in Mthatha in 1987. She then became a court interpreter, prosecutor, state law advisor, a law lecturer and a practising advocate. She sat on the bench as an acting judge of the High Court in Cape Town and the Mthatha High Court in 1999 and has also worked in the Supreme Court of Namibia and the Appeal Court in Lesotho.

In 2006 she was appointed a Judge of the Supreme Court of Appeal and in 2015 she was appointed as the first female Deputy President of the Supreme Court of Appeal. She has acted as a judge in the Labour Court, the Supreme Court of Appeal and the Constitutional Court.

“We wish Justice Maya all the best as the selection process unfolds,” said President Zuma.