Justice and Constitutional Development

National Department Budget for 2016-17

Vote purpose

Uphold and protect the Constitution and the rule of law, and render accessible, fair, speedy and cost effective administration of justice in the interests of a safer and more secure South Africa.


In addition to its constitutional mandate, the Department of Justice and Constitutional Development derives its mandate from a number of acts, which cover all the categories of the department’s functions. These include: the establishment of magistrates’ courts and appointment of magistrates and other judicial officers, their conditions of service; discipline and training; the establishment and functioning of the Special Investigating Unit and the National Prosecuting Authority, including the Asset Forfeiture Unit; the conduct of criminal proceedings; the prosecution of organised crime and corruption, and the forfeiture of assets obtained through illicit means; provision of witness protection to vulnerable and intimidated witnesses and their related persons in judicial proceedings; the establishment and functioning of bodies responsible for legal aid, law reform and rule making; the appointment of masters of the high courts, and the administration of the Guardian’s Fund and deceased and insolvent estates; the regulation and provisioning of legal advisory services to government departments; the promotion, protection and enforcement of certain human rights; the protection of vulnerable groups; the management of third party funds; and support to chapter 9 institutions.