In Mhlungwana & Others vs The State and Others – Case no. A431/15, members of the Social Justice Coalition (SJC) are challenging the constitutionality of section 12(1)(a) of the Regulation of Gatherings Act 205 of 1993 (“the Gatherings Act”) in that it criminalises a protest solely on the basis that more than 15 persons attended it and no prior notice was given.
Equal Education (EE), represented by the Equal Education Law Centre (EELC), is intervening in the matter as an amicus curiae to make submissions from the perspective of children in general and Equalisers in particular who, in the process of exercising their constitutional right to protest, fall foul of the provisions of section 12(1)(a) read with section 3 of the Gatherings Act. When this happens, these children are immediately vulnerable to arrest; they possibly face the prospect of being taken through the spectrum of the criminal justice system and potentially having to stand trial; and ultimately, if convicted, they will end up with a criminal record.
View some relevant documents:
- View Appellant’s Heads of Argument
- View Open Society Justice Initiative’s Heads of Argument
- View Equal Education’s Heads of Argument
- View UN Special Rapporteur’s Heads of Argument
- View Respondents’ Heads of Argument
- Watch EELC’s Mbekezeli Benjamin video interview
- The High Court Judgment
- Equal Education’s written submissions to the Constitutional Court
- State’s written response to amicii submissions at the Constitutional Court
- Constitutional Court Judgement