In Ex parte Ford and Two Similar Cases the Court, in response to the argument advanced on behalf of the applicants that they had a 'constitutional right' to the acceptance of the surrender of their estates, confirmed that the primary object of the South African Insolvency Act is to benefit creditors and not to grant debt relief to harassed debtors. The Court also pointed out that there is a consonance between the objects of the relevant provisions of the National Credit Act and the Insolvency Act, namely, 'not to deprive creditors of their claims but merely to regulate the manner and extent of their payment'.
This article is based on the paper delivered by the authors at a conference entitled ‘Consumer
Finance Post-Apartheid: The South African Experience’ presented by the University of Connecticut
School of Law, Hartford, Connecticut, USA, on 20 November 2009.