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Supreme Court Act, 1959 (Act No. 59 of 1959)

10. Appointment, remuneration and tenure of office of judges


(a) The Chief Justice, the judges of appeal, the judges president, the deputy judges president and all other judges of the Supreme Court shall be fit and proper persons appointed by the State President under his hand and the Seal of the Republic of South Africa, and shall receive such remuneration as may be prescribed by or under the Judges‘ Remuneration and Conditions of Employment Act, 1989, and their remuneration shall, subject to the provisions of section 7 (4) of the said Act, not be reduced during their continuance in office: Provided that the rejection by all three Houses of Parliament of a proclamation under section 2 (3) (b) of the said Act shall for the purposes of this section be deemed not to be a reduction of such remuneration.
(b) An appointment under this subsection may in the case of a person holding office in an acting capacity by virtue of any appointment under subsection (3) or (4), be made with retrospective effect from the commencement of the period during which he so held office, or, where he has so held office for two or more periods which together constitute a single uninterrupted period, from the commencement of the first of such periods.
(i) A deputy judge president of a provincial division may be appointed by the State President indefinitely or for such period as he may determine.
(ii) A deputy judge president of a provincial division, designated by the State President, shall act as the judge president of that division during the latter's absence, and the deputy judges president shall perform such other functions of that judge president as the judge president may assign to them.


(a) Any person appointed under subsection (1) shall before commencing to exercise the functions of his office take an oath or make an affirmation, which shall be subscribed by him, in the form set out below, namely—


"l ...................... .. do hereby swear/solemnly and sincerely affirm (full name) and declare that I will in my capacity as a judge of the Supreme Court of South Africa administer justice to all persons alike without fear, favour or prejudice, and, as the circumstances of any particular case may require, in accordance with the law and customs of the Republic of South Africa.".


(b) Any such oath or affirmation shall be taken or made before the senior available judge of the division concerned who shall at the foot thereof endorse a statement of the fact that it was taken or made before him and of the date on which it was so taken or made and append his signature thereto.


(3) Whenever it is for any reason expedient that a person be appointed to act as a judge in the place of any judge of that division or in addition to the judges of that division or in any vacancy in that division, the State President may appoint some fit and proper person so to act for such period as the State President may determine.


(4) The Minister may in the circumstances mentioned in subsection (3) appoint some fit and proper person to act as provided in that subsection for any period not exceeding one month.


(5) No person other than a judge or former judge to the Supreme Court shall be appointed to act as the Chief Justice or as a judge of appeal.


(6) Any appointment made under this section shall be deemed to have been made also in respect of any period during which the person appointed is necessarily engaged in connection with the disposal of any proceedings in which he has taken part as a judge and which have not been disposed of at the termination of the period for which he was appointed or, having been disposed of before or after such termination, are re-opened.


(7) The Chief Justice, a judge of appeal or any other judge of the Supreme Court shall not be removed from office except by the State President upon an address from each of the respective Houses of Parliament in the same session praying for such removal on the ground of misbehaviour or incapacity.


(8) The provisions of subsections (2) and (7) shall apply also in respect of a person appointed under subsection (3) or (4), and the provisions of paragraph (a) of subsection (1) relating to the remuneration of any judge referred to in that paragraph shall apply also in respect of a person so appointed to act in the capacity of such a judge.