President Jacob Zuma has appointed Justice Leona Valerie Theron to the bench of the Constitutional Court, the Presidency said on Friday.
Zuma appointed Theron in terms of Section 174 of the Constitution, after consulting Chief Justice Mogoeng Mogoeng and leaders of parties represented in the National Assembly, as required.
Theron will fill the vacancy left by Johan van der Westhuizen. Her appointment is effective from July 1.
“Justice Theron has served on the bench for more than eighteen years, including acting positions in various courts, including the Supreme Court of Appeal,” Presidency spokesperson Bongani Ngqulunga said on Friday.
“President Zuma has congratulated Justice Theron and has wished her all the best in her new important responsibility of advancing South Africa’s constitutional democracy.”
The Judicial Service Commission (JSC) battled to fill the vacancy after Van der Westhuizen left on January 31, 2016.
The JSC had to readvertise the position in January 2017 after one candidate withdrew following objections to his business interests during his public interview.
The list of recommendations sent to the president must contain three more names than the number of appointments to be made – so four names had needed to be put forward.
Constitutional Court judges serve non-renewable 12-year terms, or until they reach the age of 70. The limits may be extended by an Act of Parliament.