Initiative on Apex Court Appointments / Member, High-Level Advisory Panel
Dikgang Ernest Moseneke
Justice Dikgang Ernest Moseneke was born in 1947 in Pretoria, where he attended primary and secondary school. At the young age of 15, he was arrested, detained and convicted of participating in anti-apartheid activities.
He was sentenced to 10 years’ imprisonment, all of which he served on Robben Island. Moseneke studied for his matric as well as two degrees while in jail. While he was jailed on Robben Island, he obtained a BA in English and political science, as well as a B Iuris degree. He later completed an LLB degree. All three degrees were conferred by the University of South Africa.
Moseneke started his professional career as an attorney’s clerk at Klagbruns Inc in Pretoria in 1976. In 1978 he was admitted and practised for five years as an attorney and partner at the law firm Maluleke, Seriti and Moseneke. In 1983 he was called to the Bar and practised as an advocate in Johannesburg and Pretoria. Ten years later, in 1993, he was elevated to the status of senior counsel. He served on the technical committee that drafted the Interim Constitution of the Republic of South Africa of 1993. In 1994 he was appointed Deputy Chairperson of the Independent Electoral Commission, which conducted the first democratic elections in South Africa. In September 1994, while practising law, he accepted an acting appointment to the Transvaal Provincial Division of the Supreme Court.
Before his appointment as Justice of the Constitutional Court in November 2001, he was appointed a Judge of the High Court in Pretoria. On 29 November 2002, he was appointed as a judge in the Constitutional Court and in June 2005, he was appointed Deputy Chief Justice of the Republic of South Africa – a position he held until his retirement in May 2016.
Moseneke also has 14 honorary doctorates in law and multiple law-related global awards.