Nations are built on the shoulders of giants, but few have had their decisions impact a nation in a positive way quite like Albie Sachs.
Intrigue, purpose, love - Sachs’ life journey reads like a Frederick Forsyth thriller, at times poignant, others invigorating. Except Sachs’ story is not fictional.
This month, we’re looking forward to hearing Sachs retell all the gripping details at The Unifiers Inspire Session, along with acclaimed lawyer and activist Lwando Xaso and Nando’s founder Robbie Brozin at the historic Constitution Hill in Johannesburg on 29 October 2019.
Sachs’ story has all the leadership elements that South Africans need to learn right now. Courage in the face of adversity. Strategy, strength and perseverance - and an unwavering passion for the truth.
"To wake up without an arm but to feel joyously alive, to learn to do everything – to sit up, to stand, to walk, to run, to write again. Every little detail became a moment of discovery and breakthrough. I had an absolute conviction that as I got better, my country got better." - Sachs
A man that has shaped some of the better parts of the South Africa we know today, every thread of Sachs story reflects his inspiring sense of purpose and great love for Africa. The redesigning of the Constitution of South Africa post-apartheid? Sachs was a key player in that. Your constitutional right to marry a person of any gender? He made that happen. The Strange Alchemy of Life and Law, a modern classic and winner of the Alan Paton Prize in 2010? Albie Sachs wrote that.
I had an absolute conviction that as I got better, my country got better." - Sachs
A freedom fighter, author, constitutional court judge and all-round Heavy Chef, Sachs’ story started in Johannesburg 84 years ago, and has seen him jailed and exiled from his country of birth during apartheid, eventually costing him an arm and an eye when a car he was in was bombed by security operatives in Mozambique. A well-known and respected face of the South African opposition while in exile, he was appointed by Nelson Mandela as a founder member of the country’s Constitutional Court in the new South Africa and played a big role in drafting a charter for the now non-racial state.
Since then, Sachs has sat in on landmark constitutional decisions like capital punishment, same-sex marriage and the rights of the child, the homeless, battered spouses, and prisoners. Most notable constitutional laws passed in the country until he retired in 2009 have his fingerprint on them.