Strategic Litigation Unit

The Strategic Litigation Unit, based in Pretoria, has achieved notable successes since its inception in 2003.

The unit focuses much of its attention in ensuring just administrative action for indigent persons and communities. A considerable amount of time is also spent on unfair discrimination, refugee law and, increasingly, land reform matters.

The unit is headed by Advocate Lesirela Letsebe who, along with a group of dedicated attorneys and advocates, conducts most of the litigation work. The services of outside counsel are engaged when necessary. 

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The report “Queue Here for Corruption: Measuring Irregularities in South Africa’s Asylum System” comes as SA grapples with xenophobic violence, incoherent changes to the country’s immigration policies and dubious attempts by  various spheres of government to address these issues.

The urgent high court application to interdict the government from continuing with Operation Fiela-Reclaim raids unless legislative provisions are adhered to has been removed from the urgent roll in the high court in Pretoria.

Lawyers for Human Rights (LHR) brought the challenge in light of grave concerns around the legality of Operation Fiela-Reclaim - a joint operation conducted by the police, army and department of home affairs.  Specifically, LHR views the decision to implement raids in the early hours of the morning, in “cordoned off” areas with the army and Department of Home Affairs (and without the warrants required by legislation) as blatantly unlawful. The raids also appear to target non-nationals despite claims to the contrary.

Attached are the court documents for the case from all parties:

The 2013 annual report highlights some of LHR's most noteworthy cases and interventions.


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Programme Photos

LHR's Wayne Ncube educates Wits law students about working in public interest law
LHR educates Wits law students about working in public interest law
LHR's Kayan Leung educates Wits law students about working in public interest law
Merafong protest. LHR represented the Merafong community in challenging their removal from Gauteng to North West Province
Merafong demonstration
Merafong Demarcation case in the Constitutional Court
SMG immigration detention facility near Musina
Zimbabwean asylum seekers deported from Musina