The PURPOSE of The Institute for Accountability in Southern Africa (IFAISA) is to make Accountability matter.
It is our MISSION to hold the leaders of the region accountable for respecting, protecting, promoting and fulfilling the rights of the people.
Our VISION is to live in a country in which society feels safe and secure in the knowledge that the focus of the leadership is to hold human rights paramount.
The Institute for Accountability in Southern Africa (IFAISA) is devoted to upholding constitutionalism in Southern Africa through the inculcation of the values of accountability and responsiveness to the needs of the people of the region in its governments, parastatal organisations and civil society, including business and industry.
South Africa’s Constitution is a landmark, visionary document that guarantees fundamental human rights and good governance that can be respected by all segments of society. An issue of growing concern is that in the implementation of the Constitution various interest groups have sought to undermine the basic functioning of the Constitution.
IFAISA’s mission is to highlight those aspects of constitutionalism that work well, and to identify those issues where the power of the Constitution could be brought to bear more assertively in solving problems that are of concern to the South African society at large. In some cases, IFAISA has had no option but to litigate cases before the Constitutional Court.
IFAISA is a non-political, not for profit organization (NPO) that works with legal counsel on a contingency basis in litigation matters and seeks no financial gain for the Institute itself.
IFAISA believes that accountability is ‘hand in glove’ with the duty that comes with the elected privilege of serving the people and is the bedrock of true democracy and effective governance.
Accountability Now strives to ensure that all in positions of power and authority, whether in the state or elsewhere, behave accountably. This entails being able to justify decisions taken rationally and to give reasonable explanations for actions taken.
Accountability is a foundational value of the current constitutional order in South Africa, along with transparency (or openness) and responsiveness. The notion of accountability is also a cornerstone of the rule of law, which our highest law, the Constitution, regards as supreme. For politicians and public servants to behave accountably it is necessary for them to conduct themselves in a manner that is consistent with the Constitution, its values, precepts, principles, duties and obligations.
As the state must respect, protect, promote and fulfil all of the human rights guaranteed to all in the Bill of Rights, holding officialdom to account to do so is a herculean task that requires eternal vigilance. Our freedom is not an entitlement, it is a responsibility which engaged and active citizens must cherish or they will risk losing the hard won gains of the liberation of the country. A participative democracy such as that in South Africa requires the participation of all accountable citizens.