Commissioner Mohamed Shafie Ameermia
Advocate Mohamed Shafie Ameermia was appointed full time Commissioner in the South African Human Rights Commission for a 7 year term on 02 February 2014 by President Jacob Zuma. He is also a Provincial Commissioner responsible for North West and Free State. Commissioner Ameermia is responsible for Human Rights, Access to Justice and Housing.
His academic qualifications are BA LLB (Wits); LLM in Constitutional Practice and Human Rights Law ( CHR- Univ. of Pretoria);
Fellowship in International Law and Arbitration ( Dallas, Texas. USA); Honours in Business Administration(NQF7)- Turfloop Graduate School of Law and Management ( Univ. of Limpopo).
Prior to joining the Commission, Advocate Ameermia served in various senior executive management positions in the Limpopo Provincial Government as well as the Local Municipality of Makhado where he served as the Town Secretary and legal advisor in 1999:
Limpopo Department of Sport, Arts and Culture ( Corporate Services);
Department of Co-operative Govenance and Human Settlements and Traditional Affairs- (Legal services and Labour Relations, Occupational Health and Safety and Wellness) where he had managed the legal portfolio and contributed to managing the building of over 50 000 RDP homes affording shelter to approximately 400 000 poor families with decent shelter over a period of 5 years and was responsible for effecting watertight contracts and blacklisting defaulting contractors for not performing on their contractual obligations to the Provincial government on housing contracts in Limpopo.
Department of Education where as a legal advisor , he won one of the largest contractual fraud case involving tender fraud and recovered R37 million rands from a fraudulent contractor who defrauded the Limpopo education department in 2004.He was actively involved in challenging farmers who obstructed farm school learners from receiving an education from state schools that were historically built on farms in the province and championed their rights to access public education .
Makhado Municipality where he served as Town Secretary and legal advisor from 1999 to 2001. His legal expertise enabled the disposed Communities of Getrudesberg and Kraanspoort to reclaim their lands that were unjustly expropriated by the former apartheid regime in line with the Restitution of Land Rights Act.
He has over ten (10) years of extensive managerial experience at senior executive managerial level in the public sector on legal and related socio economic matters. Commissioner Ameermia brings a wealth of valuable experience to the Commission, in particular, his focus area of Housing and access to justice project as well as his experience when he worked for the National Institue for Public Interest Law and Research as a local Government practitioner and advisor post 1994..
Commissioner Ameermia served as a Member of various Professional Bodies, amongst others, Member of the Institute for Municipal Administrators of South Africa until 1999, Member of the Association for Conflict Resolution in North America until 2001,and to date he is an Alumni and Fellow and serves as a Board member of the Academy for The Center American and International Law and Arbitration in Dallas, Texas, USA.
Commissioner Ameermia is a prolific reader and enjoys reading extensively on history , philosophy , law, politics and religion. Apart from reading; he has contributed to various publications on Local Government and Human Rights throughout his career.
In terms of his vision for the SAHRC over the next seven years; Commissioner Ameermia would like to achieve the following;
That the national housing program as part of an important socio economic right becomes a reality in South Africa and the rights of the poor , vulnerable and marginalized majority of our citizens are given their rightful share from the Constitutional promises made, by effecting better pro –poor legislation policies and programs that will address the plight of the poor and needy in a equitable manner by ensuring that resources allocated to these projects are spent effectively and efficiently.
Through the access to justice program, the equality courts must be made to effectively work in ensuring that all chapter 2 rights enshrined in the Constitution are not only protected, but that they are promoted and advanced to ensure that access to justice in the interest of the poor,marginalized, the downtrodden, the destitute and the weak and disabled are advanced and championed , so that we can achieve the egalitarian and noble ideals we set out for ourselves in the Constitution become a living reality.
In sum, my vision as a Commissioner on the South Afrcan Human Rights Commission, is to translate the Bill of Rights into practical action. I realize this is an enormous task , but I am of the view this it is necessary for:
Without Rights there cannot be freedom
Without freedom there cannot be development
Without development there cannot be transformation.
Commissioner Ameermia is based at the national office within the Commissioners Programme. He can be contacted via his personal assistant: Mrs Nobesuthu Cekiso at
Telephone: 011 877 3681