As we celebrate Mandela Day on July 18 this year, we would do well to ask the question, "What do we mean when we say that everyone has a right to equality as enshrined in our constitution?" The importance of the right to equality in our teenage democracy is obvious to many as the apartheid political and legal system was based squarely on inequality and discrimination. It dealt with the problem of scarcity of resources by promoting the socio-economic development of the white population at the expense of the rest of South African society.
The deep scars of this appalling systematic programme of inequality are still visible and can still be seen in our society. The need to confront this legacy is recognised by the clause promoting equality in our constitution.