EFF cries racism, will appeal interdict against public protector

EFF leader Julius Malema. The EFF claims judge Sulet Potterill was visibly irritated when black lawyers were arguing the case for the public protector and the EFF. File photo
EFF leader Julius Malema. The EFF claims judge Sulet Potterill was visibly irritated when black lawyers were arguing the case for the public protector and the EFF. File photo
Image: Alaister Russell

The EFF will appeal against the high court interdict that, for now, has halted the public protector’s remedial action against public enterprises minister Pravin Gordhan.

“We are not surprised by this decision, which is why we had already declared on the day of proceedings that we shall be going to the Constitutional Court. This is because we had realised how visibly irritated judge Sulet Potterill was, when the black lawyers who were exclusively arguing against the exclusively white lawyers of Jamnandas [Pravin] Gordhan, [President Cyril] Ramaphosa, and all who wanted the interdict,” EFF spokesperson Mbuyiseni Ndlozi said on Monday.

“The judge was very pleased, and always willing to listen and hear the arguments of all those whites, while showing irritation, to the extent of constantly interrupting the black lawyers. In the proceedings, it was as if those black lawyers did not belong in that court.”

Gordhan had lodged an urgent application supported by Ramaphosa.

Potterill on Monday interdicted Public Protector Busisiwe Mkhwebane from enforcing the remedial actions of her report on the SA Revenue Service’s so-called rogue unit, which Potterill called  “vague, contradictory and/or nonsensical”.

Potterill found Mkhwebane’s office would suffer no harm if the interdict was granted, but Gordhan would if the remedial actions were implemented.

Mkhwebane found Gordhan violated the constitution when he established an intelligence unit at Sars and that he deliberately misled parliament about meeting the controversial Gupta family.

Mkhwebane had directed that:

  • Ramaphosa take disciplinary action against Gordhan within 30 days;
  • National Assembly speaker Thandi Modise refer Gordhan’s violations to the joint committee on ethics and members’ interests for consideration;
  • The police investigate the conduct of Gordhan, former deputy Sars commissioner Ivan Pillay and others involved in the unit for violating the constitution and the National Strategic Intelligence Act within 60 days; and
  • National Prosecuting Authority (NPA) head Shamila Batohi finalise the court case against former Sars officials.

Ndlozi said the EFF believed the interdict “essentially shuts down what is a constitutionally created institution”.

“It is a fight to the end.”


X