Ronald Lamola, Minister of Justice and Correctional Services in South Africa, became famous internationally when he headed his country’s delegation in the case it filed on December 29, 2023 before the International Criminal Court, calling for an investigation into Israeli leaders regarding the commission of war crimes and genocide in Gaza strip.
Birth and upbringing
Ronald Lamola was born in 1983 in the town of Bushbuckridge, Mpumalanga Province, South Africa. He joined the African National Congress Youth League at the age of 13.
Study and scientific training
Lamola obtained a Bachelor of Laws degree from the University of Venda in 2005. He then trained in practical law at the University of South Africa in 2006.
He obtained postgraduate degrees in corporate law from Unisa, and in banking and financial markets law. As well as in communications policy, organization and management from Wits Business.
He obtained two master's degrees from the University of Pretoria, the first of which was in corporate law, where he explored the regulation of real estate sharing schemes. His research dealt with the roles of regulatory bodies in regulating the receipt of deposits from the public, and the integration of corporate law, banking law, and Reserve Bank law.
His second master’s degree was in extractive law in Africa in 2018. His research focused on corporate social investment in the mining and energy sector.
At the beginning of his career, Lamola was a rising star in the ANC Youth League, and was deputy to President Julius Malema, known for his extremist anti-white stances, but in late 2011, the party punished Lamola and Malema for damaging his reputation.
The party proposed sending a team to Botswana to unite opposition parties to bring about regime change in the country, and the association suspended Lamola, who then disappeared from the public eye for several years.
During his time away from politics, he returned to work in the field of law, establishing his own law firm with Ndomela Lamola.
In 2012, Lamola appealed to ANC members to work to improve the party's situation, and endorsed Kgalema Motlanthe to lead it.
He returned to the world of politics in 2017 when he joined with David Mabuza, Vice President of South Africa, to support the country’s President Cyril Ramaphosa at an event before the “NASREC Conference”, the same conference in which he was elected to join the National Executive Committee, and he was its youngest member at the time, and he was soon appointed. Minister of Justice and Constitutional Development in 2019.
Case against Israel
Ronald Lamola rose to prominence and social media users called him “the man of the historic moment” when he headed his country’s delegation in the lawsuit it filed on December 29, 2023 with the International Criminal Court, calling for an investigation with Israel regarding its involvement in committing war crimes and genocide against the Palestinian people in Gaza strip.
In its 84-page lawsuit, South Africa says Israel failed to prevent… Genocide It failed to prosecute the officials who publicly incited this genocide.
Lamola stressed that South Africa is determined to end “the genocide in Gaza through this lawsuit,” adding that his country “derives strength from world leaders who stand on the right side of history.”
Jobs and responsibilities
- He served as Director of the Transversal Unit in the Govan Mbeki Municipality between March and June 2009.
- Director of the Mpumalanga Ministry of Culture, Sport and Recreation Office from July 2009 to January 2011.
- Acting Spokesman to the Prime Minister of Mpumalanga from January to October 2011.
- Member of the National Electoral Commission at the ANC conference in December 2017 (the youngest member in the history of the Commission).
- He was appointed Minister of Justice and Correctional Services on 29 May 2019.
- He headed his country's delegation in the hearings in the case that his country filed against Israel in December 2023.