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2004 Gruber Justice Prize

Chief Justice Arthur Chaskalson and Deputy Chief Justice Pius Langa are Justices of the South African Constitutional Court who have helped restrain arbitrary power in laying a solid foundation for justice and equality in what was once a center of injustice and inequality.

2004 Justice Prize Recipients

Laureate Profile

With a life long commitment to human rights, Chief Justice Arthur Chaskalson was appointed by President Nelson Mandela to be the first President of South Africa's Constitutional Court, the country's highest court in constitutional matters. An expert in constitutional law, he has served as consultant to several African governments and other organizations in the drafting of constitutions. He sees the existence and promotion of an independent judiciary as a core value of democracy and of good governance.

As an advocate and as a judge, Deputy Chief Justice Pius Langa has helped to establish his country’s Constitution as a model for modern democratic societies. He shares his expertise and experience in a number of countries struggling with regime change and new democracies, including Sri Lanka, Zimbabwe, Rwanda, the Fiji Islands, and Tanzania. He believes that a culture of rights depends on our ability to respect the rights of the weakest and the worst among us, and that a constitution can place constraints on society that help society preserve its own morality.


With different life experiences and varied professional backgrounds Chief Justice Arthur Chaskalson and Deputy Chief Justice Pius Langa of the South African Constitutional Court have worked as an exemplary team at the head of an outstanding and innovative court, restraining arbitrary power and laying firm foundations for enduring justice and equality in the former citadel of racism and injustice.

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