U.S. professor to sue Hlophe

2008-07-11 00:00

Cape Town — Controversial Cape judge president John Hlophe faces another civil suit, this time from a law professor in the United States.

By late yesterday afternoon, there was still confusion over Professor Winston Nagan’s submission to the registrar of the Cape Town High Court, in which he asks the court to proceed with a civil claim against Hlophe. South African law requires that permission has to be sought before such a claim can be instituted.

However, the Cape Times reported yesterday that the papers had been served.

According to the report, the claim arises from remarks Hlophe made during a judgment in February 2007. Nagan, a senior lecturer in law at the University of Florida, was an acting judge in Cape Town during November and December 2006.

When Hlophe delivered the judgment, it is alleged, he said the verdict had been delayed because Nagan undertook to record the verdict, but returned to the U.S. without having done so. He is also alleged to have said that Nagan neglected to record other verdicts.

Yesterday afternoon, Hlophe’s lawyer, Lister Nuku, said he knew nothing of such a submission to the Cape Town High Court. “I consulted Judge Hlophe this morning and he never mentioned a word about a suit against him.”

Hlohpe would only say: “I don’t speak to reporters”. He would neither confirm nor deny that he knew of Nagan’s submission.

A spokeswoman for the Cape Town High Court said she could not confirm whether the petition had been received.

Later, a Justice Department spokesman said no papers by Nagan summoning Hlophe “have been entered in the computer system of the Cape Town High Court”.

This does not mean that the papers have not been delivered to the high court, as there is sometimes a delay in entering submissions into the computer system.

Hlophe’s deputy, Judge Jeanette Traverso, is on leave overseas and was not answering her cellphone.

The latest drama involving Hlophe comes during his dispute with Constitutional Court judges over allegations that he tried to improperly influence two judges of the court in their decisions over the seizure of documents of ANC president Jacob Zuma. The Judicial Services Commission decided last week that the complaint by the judges, and Hlophe’s counter-complaints, should be referred for oral evidence.

Advocate Marumo Moerane, SC, a member and spokesman for the JSC, said late yesterday that no date for the hearing of the evidence has been set.

Join the conversation!

24.com encourages commentary submitted via MyNews24. Contributions of 200 words or more will be considered for publication.

We reserve editorial discretion to decide what will be published.
Read our comments policy for guidelines on contributions.

24.com publishes all comments posted on articles provided that they adhere to our Comments Policy. Should you wish to report a comment for editorial review, please do so by clicking the 'Report Comment' button to the right of each comment.

Comment on this story
0 comments
Comments have been closed for this article.

Inside News24

 
/News

Book flights

Compare, Book, Fly

Traffic Alerts
There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.
 
English
Afrikaans
isiZulu

Hello 

Create Profile

Creating your profile will enable you to submit photos and stories to get published on News24.


Please provide a username for your profile page:

This username must be unique, cannot be edited and will be used in the URL to your profile page across the entire 24.com network.

Settings

Location Settings

News24 allows you to edit the display of certain components based on a location. If you wish to personalise the page based on your preferences, please select a location for each component and click "Submit" in order for the changes to take affect.




Facebook Sign-In

Hi News addict,

Join the News24 Community to be involved in breaking the news.

Log in with Facebook to comment and personalise news, weather and listings.