Prisoners' rights litigation in South Africa since 1994: a critical evaluation
Pierre, De Vos
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It is a sad fact that there is often a huge gap in South Africa between the constitutional promise of a life lived with dignity and respect, on the one hand, and the actual lived reality of people who are supposed to be protected by that Constitution, on the other. The hearings at the Jali Commission of Inquiry into the system of corrections in South Africa have revealed that many prisoners' are incarcerated in circumstances that fall far short of those guaranteed them in the South African Constitution. This article is based, in part, on a number of interviews conducted with human-rights practitioners directly involved in prisoners' rights litigation in South Africa. To gather background information about the problems relating to the administration inside the Department of Correctional Services, I also interviewed other experts who have worked with the Department in the past.i- The article furthermore relies on academic writing and press reports.