Administrative law can broadly be defined as a branch of public law that regulates the way in which public authorities, and in certain instances also private entities, perform their powers and functions when implementing or giving effect to statutory and other empowering provisions. The idea that administrative decision-makers cannot exercise powers beyond those conferred on them in law is a fundamental feature of South Africa’s Constitutional democracy.
Section 33 of the Constitution records that everyone has the right to administrative action that is lawful, reasonable, and procedurally fair. Similarly, public and private bodies that exercise public powers and functions ought to be regulated in terms of law.
The main piece of legislation overseeing administrative reviews is the Promotion of Administrative Justice Act 3 of 2000 (“the PAJA”).
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