(L-R) Chief Justice Mogoeng Mogoeng; Alison Lee, chief executive, Corporate Counsel Association of South Africa (CCASA); Otsile Matlou, chief operating officer, ENSafrica

Chief Justice Mogoeng Mogoeng received a standing ovation on receiving the achievement award at the South African Legal Awards.

He was appointed to South Africa’s most senior judicial post in 2011 and has won praise from the legal community for defending the rule of law in South Africa.

One of his most high-profile rulings came in June, when he ruled that a no-confidence vote against South Africa’s president, Jacob Zuma, could be held in secret.

He told the audience to use their influence to encourage businesses to uphold the rule of law in Africa, adding: “Get worried when the judiciary in countries you operate from gets attacked.”

He also praised law firms and in-house departments for their CSR work and floated the possibility of South Africa having its own commercial court.

CCASA chief executive Alison Lee said the award was in recognition of his contribution “not only to the legal profession in South Africa and beyond, but to South Africa and its people as a whole”.

To return to the full list of winners, click here.