Thuli Madonsela, former Public Protector, received the Knight of the Legion of Honour on behalf of the French President on Monday, 19 April at a ceremony in Stellenbosch.
The top honour was bestowed upon her to recognise her great achievements in defence of the rule of law and the fight against corruption.
Madonsela thanked everyone for their congratulations, saying she was immensely overwhelmed with gratitude.
The Legion of Honour is the highest French order of merit, both military and civil, established in 1802. In current usage, the order is conferred to entrepreneurs, high-level civil servants, scientists, artists, sport champions and others with connections in the executive.
While membership in the Legion is technically restricted to French nationals, foreign nationals who have served France or the ideals it upholds may receive the honour, bestowed on only a few of distinguished recipients.