Prof Thuli Madonsela, the Law Faculty Trust Chair in Social Justice in the Faculty of Law at Stellenbosch University (SU), has receive yet another accolade for her work in the pursuit of social justice.
Prof Madonsela was honoured with the Leadership for Justice Award from Shared Interest, a major impact investing group founded in New York by anti-apartheid campaigner Donna Katzin. She received the award on 25 April at Shared Interest's 25th Anniversary Gala in New York, in celebration of 25 years of South Africa's democracy and investing in Southern Africa's future.
Shared Interest is a non-profit investment fund that was founded to enhance access to commercial credit for low-income black borrowers. It provides collateral using loan guarantees to move local banks to lend to financially excluded communities to build capacity for smallholder farmers and emerging entrepreneurs. To date, Shared Interest has placed $28 million of guarantees, unlocking $121 million in loans benefiting 2.3 million people in Southern Africa. Building on its successful model it has expanded to Malawi, Mozambique, Swaziland, and is now preparing programmes in Zambia and soon to be Tanzania.
An Advocate of the High Court of South Africa, Prof Madonsela has been a lifelong activist on social justice, constitutionalism, human rights, good governance and the rule of law. Named one of TIME100's most influential people in the world in 2014 and Forbes Africa Person of the Year 2016, she is one of the drafters of South Africa's Constitution and co- architect of several laws that have sought to anchor South Africa's democracy. During her seven-year term as SA's Public Protector, she fearlessly investigated maladministration, corruption, executive ethics violations, and related improprieties in state affairs, culminating in her report on state capture. Her work since then at SU has focused on promoting good governance, justice, and accountability in public life, in addition to teaching constitutional and administrative law.
"I am humbled and honoured to receive this Leadership for Justice Award and will continue to play my part in accelerating the pace of achieving the constitutional promise of an inclusive society based in social justice, shared prosperity, friendship and peace," Prof Madonsela said.
“As long as there's injustice somewhere, there can't be sustainable peace anywhere. We need all hands on deck – historical advantage, no historical advantage, men, women, children, the old. United, we're going to rise; divided, we're going to fall," she added.