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From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

The Honourable

Lex Mpati
President of the Supreme Court of Appeal of South Africa
In office
15 August 2008 – October 2016
DeputyKenneth Mthiyane
Mahomed Navsa (Acting)
Mandisa Maya
Preceded byCraig Howie
Succeeded byMandisa Maya
Deputy President of the Supreme Court of Appeal of South Africa
In office
1 January 2003 – 14 August 2008
Preceded byOffice created
Succeeded byLouis Harms
Judge of the Supreme Court of Appeal
In office
9 December 2000 – 31 December 2002
Judge of the Eastern Cape Division of the Supreme Court
In office
1 February 1997 – 8 December 2000
Chancellor of Rhodes University
Assumed office
22 February 2013
Preceded byJakes Gerwel
Personal details
Born (1949-09-05) 5 September 1949 (age 71)
Durban, South Africa
CitizenshipSouth African
Spouse(s)Mireille Mpati (née Nontobeko)
Alma materRhodes University
Nelson Mandela Metropolitan University

Lex Mpati SC (born 5 September 1949) is a South African judge, Chancellor of Rhodes University,[1] and former President of the Supreme Court of Appeal of South Africa.[2]

Early life and education

Mpati has deep roots in Grahamstown and the province as a whole. He was born in Durban in 1949 but his schooling was in the Eastern Cape, first at St Joseph's Catholic School at Fort Beaufort and then at Mary Waters High School in Grahamstown, from where he matriculated in 1967.

Mpati enrolled at Rhodes in 1979, under a special permit (required by black students), and graduated in 1982 with a BA degree in legal theory and Xhosa. He graduated with a LLB degree in 1984.[3] He was only the second black student to graduate with an LLB from Rhodes.


Lex Mpati started his legal career in 1985 and was admitted as an advocate in 1989. He became a member of the Eastern Cape Bar in 1989 and was appointed as senior counsel in April 1996.[3] He served as a Judge in the Eastern Cape Division of the High Court from 1997–2000. He was appointed as a Judge of Appeal, first in an acting capacity and in December 2000 as a full member of the Supreme Court of Appeal. He ascended to Deputy President of the Supreme Court of Appeal in 2003, and to President in August 2008. He is also a member of the Judicial Service Commission.[2]

He attended Rhodes University as a student between 1979 and 1982, and subsequently returned to his alma mater as Chancellor in February 2013.[1]

Other interests

Mpati is known to have been a keen rugby player and was a founding member of the South Eastern Districts Rugby Union. He has also served on committees of the South African Rugby Union and on the legal committee of SANZAR.[4][5]

Honours and awards

Mpati was awarded an honorary LLD from Rhodes University in 2004 and in 2011 the Nelson Mandela Metropolitan University also conferred an honorary Doctor of Laws degree on him.[5]


  1. ^ a b University, Rhodes. "Justice Mpati to be installed as the new Chancellor at Rhodes". Retrieved 2018-01-11.
  2. ^ a b "SCA Judges' CV". Retrieved 2018-01-11.
  3. ^ a b "High Court: New Judges" (PDF). Consultus. 10 (1): 22. 1997 – via General Council of the Bar of South Africa.
  4. ^ "SARU boss takes aim at SANZAR". 2015. Retrieved 2021-03-03.
  5. ^ a b "Tribute to Justice Lex Mpati" (PDF). Advocate. 32 (3): 8–9. 2019 – via General Council of the Bar of South Africa.

This page was last edited on 11 March 2021, at 18:47
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