The courts and socio-economic rights: carving out a role
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Although the jurisprudence on the socio-economic rights in the Bill of Rights is still in its infancy, the number of cases coming before the courts is gathering momentum. In particular, the Constitutional Court judgment in the case of Government of the RSA v Grootboom 2000 (11) BCLR 1169 (CC) [the Grootboom case] is a landmark in socio-economic rights enforcement in South Africa. Several important insights can be garnered from the emerging jurisprudence, particularly from the Grootboom case. The Constitutional Court has confirmed that the socio-economic rights in the Bill of Rights place both a duty on the State and other important role players to respect these rights, and a positive duty on the State to protect, promote and fulfil them.