The South African Zionist Federation says it believes the decision of the Judicial Conduct Committee against Chief Justice Mogoeng Mogoeng must be taken on review.
The JCC, in its 67-page decision, has ordered that the Chief Justice apologise unconditionally and retract statements that he made on Israel during a webinar hosted by the Jerusaleum Post in June 2020.
In a video, Mogoeng said, as a Christian, he is obliged to love and pray for Israel and that his nation will be cursed if he doesn’t do so.
Reaction to Chief Justice Mogoeng Mogoeng’s comments on Israel:
The SA BDS Coalition and two other organisations felt that the Chief Justice had involved himself in a political controversy and lodged a complaint to the JCC regarding his utterances, which they perceive as pro-Israeli and inappropriate.
National Chairperson of the South African Zionist Federation, Rowan Polovin, however, disputes this.
He says Mogoeng’s original comments were legitimate, fair and impartial.
“They gave full credence to both sides of the Isreali/Palestinian conflict; they were balanced and they expressed support for peace and a peaceful resolution to the Isreali/Palestinian issue.
Secondly, it is unfortunate that an anti-Israel pressure group is trying to drive a wedge between peace-loving biblical Christians, peace-loving South African and the rest of them. They are trying to make this issue into one that is politically controversial,” says Polovin.
Polovin says that the JCC’s decision is part of an institutionalised cancel culture, sending out a message that those with whom one does not share a belief system with will be targeted.
The SA BDS Coalition has lauded the decision against the Chief Justice.
“The statements he made were unrelated to discharging his judicial office which is one of the stipulations in the contract’s conduct how a chief justice is supposed to conduct himself and he denounced government policy on Palestine on the eve of South Africa raising a debate in the UN Security Council the debate was in support of the human rights of the Palestinean people,” says SA BDS convenor, Roshan Dadoo.
The Chief Justice has 10 days to appeal the decision.