The University of South Africa (UNISA) has conferred an honorary Doctorate of Laws (LLD) on South Africa’s Deputy Chief Justice, Mandisa Maya. This follows its recognition of Chief Justice Raymond Zondo on Wednesday.
In a ceremony on Thursday evening the institution lauded Maya for her various contributions to the judiciary and the broader legal profession, including the empowerment and mentoring of women.
The first woman Deputy Chief Justice of the country, Maya hailed the institution for its boldness in the recognition of women.
“What makes this honour even more meaningful is that it recognises a woman in a male dominated field, the legal field in which women are still grossly under-represented. ”
Maya’s acceptance speech delved into the gender imbalances within society which still require attention.
“The gender gap in various occupations continues to be widened by the several barriers that prevent women from getting equal opportunity and causes some women to be subjected to unfair employment practices.”
Maya noted, however, that despite the challenges of under-representation of women, there have been gains particularly within the judiciary.
“The judiciary in particular has been making earnest efforts to advance more women into senior positions. Recently the second woman president of the SCA was appointed following my ascendance to the Constitutional Court as the country’s first woman deputy chief justice. Across the nine high courts , two are led by women judge presidents while five courts have women judges as their deputy judge presidents. ”
Unisa confers honorary Doctorate on Deputy Chief Justice Mandisa Maya: