On Wednesday, June 7, 2017, President Jacob Zuma named Justice Ray Zondo as Deputy Chief Justice of the Republic of South Africa, and he was so appointed. According to the Presidency, Justice Zondo came to the position of Deputy Chief Justice “with enormous experience in the broader legal profession.”
Zondo worked as a human rights and labour lawyer before he was appointed a judge. He served on several commissions and committees, including the Goldstone Commission of Inquiry Regarding the Prevention of Violence and Intimidation, and the ministerial task team established in 1994 to draft the Labour Relations Bill.
Other important positions held by him previously include the following:
- Appointed a Labour Court judge in November 1997
- In 1999, he was appointed as a judge of the then Transvaal provincial division of the High Court
- The following year, he was appointed Judge President of the Labour Court and Labour Appeal Court for 10 years. After completing his term there, he returned to the North Gauteng division of the High Court
- Appointed Acting Constitutional Court Judge from November 2011 until May 31, 2012.
Zondo became a Constitutional Court judge in September 2012. But this is not the story.
The Real Story
Raymond Zondo, a fatherless black South African, had a poor mother and siblings who could hardly feed whilst he was getting ready to go to university on an expected bursary. He faced the dilemma of either taking up a job to support his family, as was expected of many young men during the obnoxious apartheid era, or going to university. But Raymond was a determined young man who had the dream of becoming a lawyer and bailing his family out of poverty.
Indian to the Rescue
Taking his fate in his hands, Raymond approached Mr Moosa, an Indian shopkeeper, for a loan to support his family. Mr. Moosa agreed to help him but would not give him cash. Rather, he offered to supply Raymond’s family with sufficient groceries (provisions) each month for the three years of his junior degree course. The arrangement was that Raymond would repay him the value of the groceries on the completion of his degree. When the time came for him to repay Mr Moosa, the unexpected happened.
Watch this short video for the touching story as told by Justice Ray Zondo himself:
- No matter your race, creed, colour or status, help someone in need. It doesn’t necessarily have to be CASH. There is no one with nothing to give. Give of any substance, talent, skill, time, virtue, etc, that God has blessed you with – what is known in the parlance of giving as the Triple T (Treasure, Talent and Time)
- The best help anyone can ever render is to help develop a person. The person you develop today could be the one to develop your community, your country, or even the world tomorrow.
- Don’t be afraid or too shy to ask for help when you need it. Even the Bible advises so:
“Ask (for something good) and you will receive, and your joy will be complete” (John 16:24)
- Also, DO NOT FORGET those who helped you when you needed help, in whatever form.
- Mr Moosa said, “Just do to others what I’ve done to you.”
What about you? Are you willing/ready to repay good with good? If yes, start NOW.