Former Constitutional Court Judge and Director of Freedom Under Law Johan Kriegler has expressed misgivings over the participation of Economic Freedom Fighters (EFF) leader Julius Malema and Advocate Dali Mpofu in the Judicial Services Commission (JSC) panel interviews for the next Chief Justice.
Kriegler says the two have a cloud over their heads and therefore should not be part of what he terms a quality control process for the country’s top judge.
“In the case of Mr Malema, a parliamentary ethics committee found him guilty of abusing his position at the JSC to further his personal position and not the public position which is a serious breach of his duty as a member of the JSC that is still hanging,” says Kriegler.
In December 2021, Parliament’s Ethics Committee requested that Julius Malema apologise to Gauteng High Court Judge Elias Matojane as well as to the Judicial Service Commission (JSC) for using the JSC to further his own interests.
The committee found Malema guilty of breaching the Members of Parliament Code of Conduct for his line of questioning of Judge Matojane who was being interviewed by the JSC for a vacancy at the Supreme Court of Appeal earlier this year.
Malema had three complaints against him by the Council for the Advancement of the Constitution’s Lawson Naidoo. The first complaint related to Malema’s stinging rebuke of the Zondo Commission during a media conference.
“In the case of Mr Mpofu, he has been found guilty by a panel of the JSC of having acted in the proceedings of the Zondo Commission unbefitting an Advocate,” added Kriegler.
DISCUSSION: The JSC process and suitability of the people conducting the interviews