African Customary Law 


Intermediate Level, second semester, 36 lectures and tutorials.

18 NQF credits at HEQSF level 7

Convener: Associate Professor F Osman

Course entry requirements: All Preliminary Level courses to have been completed.

Course outline:

The course provides an overview of the historical recognition of customary law during the colonial and apartheid periods to demonstrate the effect of these policies on customary law today. It analyses the Constitution’s recognition of customary law and impact the Constitution has had on both the application and development of customary law. The course further facilitates an understanding of legal theory with the objective of analysing whether customary law is consistent with modern legal theory. At a substantive level, the course examines the customary law regulating marriage, succession, traditional authority, land and dispute resolution.

Lectures and tutorials are aimed at ensuring that students engage critically with customary law sources and can contextualise the law, politics and commercial interests surrounding the substantive topics.

DP requirements: Please refer to the course handout and/or the intermediate year schedule.

Assessment: Coursework 50% Final Examination 50%.