Mogoeng vows to uphold Constitution

2011-09-08 20:32

Cape Town - Judge Mogoeng Mogoeng vowed on Thursday to uphold and protect the Constitution as the newly-appointed chief justice.

Mogoeng's appointment was announced by President Jacob Zuma at a news conference in Pretoria.

He took to the podium to thank Zuma for his "trust and confidence" and promised not to betray it.

"I also vow to be faithful to the Republic of South Africa, to uphold and protect the Constitution and the human rights entrenched in it, and to administer justice for all persons alike without fear, favour or prejudice, in accordance with the Constitution and the law," the 50-year-old Mogoeng said.

Zuma commended Mogoeng for staying silent amid criticism on his nomination.

He said Mogoeng responded at the correct forum, the Judicial Services Commission.

"The interview was no doubt the longest, most transparent and most robust ever undertaken by a candidate of chief justice in the history of this young democracy," Zuma said.

Mogoeng will take up his position with immediate effect, succeeding the outgoing Sandile Ngcobo.

The announcement came amid strong opposition to Mogoeng's nomination.

IFP unhappy

There was mixed reaction from political parties about the appointment, but the IFP in particular voiced its displeasure.

The IFP  expressed disappointment and said the current system for appointing a chief justice did not allow for the best candidate to be appointed.

"It is not only surprising, but shocking that despite the massive public outcry, the president has simply ignored the objections and appointed this controversial candidate," IFP spokesperson Koos van der Merwe said.

"It shows an utter disrespect for public opinion, and our democracy as a whole."

Van der Merwe, who is also a member of the Judicial Service Commission, said he was considering introducing a private members' bill in Parliament that could lead to changes in the way the chief justice was appointed.


Despite saying that it was "regrettable" that Zuma did not accept its request for more candidates to be provided, the FF Plus said that the party would accept the move.

"We are of the opinion that more candidates could possibly have rendered a better result," it said in a statement.

"We accept that Justice Mogoeng has been appointed as chief justice, and consider it to be in the best interest of the judiciary that forthwith positive co-operation is given in this regard," the statement said.

The African Christian Democratic Party, however, welcomed the move.

ACDP leader Kenneth Meshoe said: "We have no doubt that, given Mogoeng’s lengthy experience on the bench, he will uphold the Constitution and protect the independence of the judiciary from executive interference."

He said Mogoeng would face various challenges in his new role.

"We believe he is more than able to meet these challenges. He also has a passion for facilitating access to justice, which we clearly support."

  • Nobody - 2011-09-08 20:47

    Well the president believes in you, we don't!

      Eurocentric - 2011-09-08 21:36

      Here’s the problem (not for the white man though) with the word “underprivileged”: It's PASSIVE. The black people at the bottom of the economic food chain are the OPRESSSED. They are down there because of oppression. This is why the term "less fortunate" infuriates me. It simply disregards the history of racial subordination and oppression and says that we are "unlucky. It removes the context.

      Eurocentric - 2011-09-08 21:36

      White people have a problem with the word overprivileged. It draws attention to the fact that there's a flip side of oppression. We tend to talk about the people on the bottom of the food chain ("underprivileged" black people) without paying any attention to those at the top. They are at the top because of racial oppression and subordination. If the word "overprivileged" existed, people would be wise to the fact that justice needs to take place and drastic steps need to be taken to achieve racial equity and justice.

      Eurocentric - 2011-09-08 21:37

      "No one ever gave me anything" NONSENSE 400 Years of white supremacy set your life up and screwed up the lives of billions of people of colour all over the world. What happens in one generation effects the next and the next and the next... generation! You don't seem to get that. If my father was held down, I will be at a major disadvantage. If my forefathers had help from the formal system of white supremacy, I will be at a major advantage. All white people have benefited from an unjust system

      Eurocentric - 2011-09-08 21:37

      "White people are mean and uncaring, morally bankrupt and ethically flawed, because white supremacy has taken a huge toll on white people's capacity to be fully human." - Robert Jensen (a white man)

      Eurocentric - 2011-09-08 21:37

      The black mind has been thoroughly colonized by the white man. Don't get me wrong, I too would like to see the ANC change for the better. To represent the LEFT of the political spectrum. They need to represent the working class masses of this country. They need to realise that justice needs to be done. Don't you believe in justice? I think that the ANC should take a step back, and look at this piece of land we now call South Africa, and consider all that has happened on it. If they do they, they will be able to see EVERYTHING IN CONTEXT. Once they have seen everything in CONTEXT, the right steps can be taken towards racial JUSTICE and EQUITY. What the white people in this day and age keep doing, is pointing to individuals and the ANC government which makes up about 0.00001% of the country and they have been in power for only 17 years. The white people continue to look at the people at the bottom IN ISOLATION, instead of putting everything IN CONTEXT and realise that they are at the bottom because others have oppressed and subjugated them. You also have to look at the FLIP SIDE OF THIS OPPRESSION AND SUBJUGATION. White people have UNJUSTLY BENEFITED WHICH MEANS THAT THEY HAVE to be considered in the equation when talking about racial justice and equality. BOTTOM LINE: WHEN TALKING ABOUT RACIAL JUSTICE AND EQUALITY, ONE HAS TO LOOK AT BOTH SIDES OF THE EQUATION.

      Rightway - 2011-09-08 22:03

      @Eurocentric What are you on about. Get over it. Lift yourself up. Stop blaming whites. Only failures do that. Are you a failure? The it,s your own fault. Go to school. Get an education.Get a life.

      TaniaSandraSteyn - 2011-09-08 22:07

      Eurocentric - write a blog, and substantiate every statement. Don't proclaim your writ on a forum about Mogoeng. It's like farting into the wind. Your message got lost in the storm. Perhaps the word you should use is overkilled instead of overprivileged. 1% of 10%?

      Sit-hole - 2011-09-08 22:44

      Eurocentric. you making excuses for yourselves. Indian people where also under apartheid 17 years ago. Look at them. They are thriving in SA. Never hear them b|tch|ng.

      tk - 2011-09-08 22:45

      Ai Euro... I will leave the first couple of paragraphs, really don't have the energy for that right now. Just the fact that you are stating that an extreme must be represented by government make me question your understanding. No where as any extremist group ever proved to be a successful move. Extremist left with their communist approach disguised as socialism has been proved enough times that theory is different than practical results, and with that communism just does not work. We are not special in RSA. By referring to justice you are already contradicting yourself. Justice is always about the immediate, never about the past. Justice only applies to the parties directly involved. Blaming the children for their parents actions has never been seen as justice. THen we come to context point. You must really feel you are special and that only you can see the context, and nobody else. Wake up, you are not really that special. Just by looking at the statistics of home ownership and the working class you will realise that we already have more middle class black people in SA than there are whites in the country, and black as surpassed whites with home loans. So, blacks are in the economy, and a lot of them deserve it. Even if you reasoning was really in full context and not biased against whites and the past, then the economic question remains. And on that point the only way your argument will work is to believe that RSA is unique, and that we don't have corrupt individuals

      happycamper - 2011-09-09 08:52

      @Eurocentric...white people are at the top because we are taught from a toddler that self respect is everything. To be poor is not a shame, but to be dirty is...we also translate this to our state of mind. We don't expect others to live for us..we do the living. And now you listen to me: We have been oppressed when the British took our farms..when they killed our woman and children...when we were put in concentration camps...and we never blamed anybody or expected to be helped. We stood up and made this a first world country. So again...we have survived the hurt in europe...we have survived the hurt during the english...we have survived the Zulu and the Xhosa...we will survive the ANC (and it's little c@nt Malema). yes we have made the mistake of Apartheid and we are sorry...but remember we learn. Brace yourselves.

      Refilwemu - 2011-09-09 10:54

      @Nobody,Majority of the people of this country and the majority of JSC believe in him, you just nobody blowing hot air.

      Mike - 2011-09-09 12:48

      Imagine Euro, if you actually put in as much effort into applying your skills as you do bleating on here, you would indeed be uplifted. Simple. But's so much easier to blame someone else and extend a grasping hand than actually do something productive.

  • Vernon - 2011-09-08 20:47

    just... to get the job!!

      cliffarc - 2011-09-09 12:58

      - Sure he will - but only when it suits his Anc masters.

  • letsee - 2011-09-08 20:49

    I wouldn't have taken the job after so many objections and if I was the President you wouldn't have been given the job after so many objections. The objections came from organizations and people better qualified than the President to decide for a Chief Justice.

  • Stephan Janse van Vuuren - 2011-09-08 20:49

    Riiiight. Guess we don't have any choice or say in the matter, now do we cANCer? There was this very nice song in the 80's, "Road to Nowhere" by the Talking Heads. "" I find it quite applicable.

  • Vernon - 2011-09-08 20:51

    a further plunge into the dark abyss. may all the gods watch over us!!!!!!

  • The Wonderer - 2011-09-08 20:57

    "The interview was no doubt the longest, most transparent and most robust ever undertaken by a candidate of chief justice in the history of this young democracy," Zuma said Longest, maybe, "most transparent", yeah, we could all see it was a farce from the get go, "most robust:, oh please man, absolute nonsense, "young democracy", what democracy, you (Zoooma)ignored EVERYONE!!!! There's no democracy in the ANC! What a nutter! "It shows an utter disrespect for public opinion, and our democracy as a whole."

  • Angel - 2011-09-08 21:03

    Every organization with legal savvy was against this oke, what does Zuma do? Goes ahead as if no objections were raised! Zuma is doing exactly what the rest of this continent's governments has done.

      tailormade - 2011-09-09 08:34

      Jip, I agree: shocking. It took Zuma the whole of 3 days to "study" all the objections and "study" the whole of the interview process. What a farce.......but he's still "studying" the public protector's report. What a joke!!!!

  • Jon JJ - 2011-09-08 21:11

    Somehow one gets the feeling that this is like a fox promising not to eat any of the chickens in the chicken pen.

  • leonard - 2011-09-08 21:18

    And the net result is as follows,Zuma now has the military,police,JUDICIARY and parliament in his pocket.What next?Maybe we have to look north to see what`s to come.

  • Vela Stardust - 2011-09-08 21:27

    Mogoeng is tainted because he was appointed by Zuma. Everything Zuma touches is tainted. Should Mogoeng have been appointed by anyone else, he most likely would have been accepted. It also raises the question why Mogoeng was singled out by Zuma. Lets hope Mogoeng does a good job and we are all wrong.

  • Amer - 2011-09-08 21:32

    Zuma acted within his rights in selecting him; the man is an experienced judge, and should be able to do the job properly. The opposition parties must realise that a requirement to consult with them, does not mean they can make the ultimate decision

      leonard - 2011-09-09 06:03

      @Amer Hold on there.How did Zuma arrive at Mogoe as an option?Don`t ever recall hearing that he consulted with anyone on potential candidates.For a man that cannot even write his own speeches let alone read those given to him,plus the public and judicial outcry,I have to assume OTHER reasons for the appointment.Too late now of course but what the hell,this is Africa !!!!!!!!

      tailormade - 2011-09-09 08:37

      Amer, with all due respect to yourself: It is, however, time that someone can actually come up with good rational arguments as to why MM is the best candidate for this job. All of this sentimental rhetoric is really disappointing.

  • Nomolas - 2011-09-08 21:35

    Something is cooking here, only time will tell why this guy is appointed by Zuma!!!

      tryanything - 2011-09-08 21:43

      Bulldozed Just like the toll roads....

      Mike - 2011-09-09 12:48


  • TaniaSandraSteyn - 2011-09-08 21:57

    So many eyes; so many eyes. I am sure you will do your duty. I wish we could have the same eyes on the rest of the judiciary. Congratulations.

  • Rightway - 2011-09-08 21:57

    ....vowed to uphold and protect the Constitution as the newly-appointed chief justice. .... That is until Zuma tells him otherwise or the voices in his head that speak from above.

  • Cheryl Muir - 2011-09-08 22:12


  • Mandla - 2011-09-08 22:17

    Mr Koos van der merwe,just like what cope said when they deffected from the ANC.The same words you are uttering were uttered by Cope(We need to change the way our country elect the president and do like how the Americans are doing it),you are saying you are considering introducing a private members' bill in Parliament that could lead to changes in the way the chief justice was appointed.Will it be constitutional when introduced,people will always want things changed only if they are not happy about the outcome.It seems the opposition does not know how democracy works.Introducing all those bills to suite you means that we need to change the constitution which i think was compromised in the first place to accomodate the frustrated white people who did not think that they will be accepted and accomodated by a black governmant because of what they did to black people in the past.I wish if Chief Justice Mogoeng Mogoeng could introduce heavy fees for rich people who approch the concourt and open the concourt for poor people without paying a single cent.Close the gap on rich people who use their money to bully the courts in expense of poor people.We will be equaly before the law if poor people will be afforded an oppotunity to approach the concourt without barriers or obstacles.

      joelle.niven - 2011-09-09 09:31

      Ever heard of a little thing called punctuation?

      leonard - 2011-09-09 09:53

      @Mandla. Another highly educated well rounded appointee awaits a senior presidential position!!!!Your use of words etc. makes you a perfect candidate to fit in with what we currently have.Geeeez.

  • PinkAndProud - 2011-09-08 23:04

    Primitive is as primitive does. No wonder Zooomer 783 wants this guy!

  • Prof - 2011-09-09 06:55

    I Told You That The President won't change his mind. Anyway, Congrats Mogoeng Mogoeng and all the best....

  • jack sparrow - 2011-09-09 07:45

    Mistake Mistake

      Prof - 2011-09-09 08:48

      it's not a mistake bacause he has not yet fumbled on his new job

  • tailormade - 2011-09-09 08:31

    What's done is done. It's now up to MM to prove that he deserves this appointment. I just find it interesting that MM took the same vow when he was appointed in each of his positions, yet he continued to prejudice his own judgements (as recently as 2011) with his personal beliefs. Why should it be different now? More than anything, it's time that the JSC gets overhauled. If the judiciary is supposed to be completely independent....why is the JSC packed with politicians??? The JSC has made shocking decisions over the last two years, have been dragged to court over it....and lost. If they did their jobs properly back then, they never would have approved MM's nomination for the ConCourt in the first. Next thing we know, Judge Hlope will be nominated for the ConCourt & accepted. Moseneke must be wondering what the hell he ever did wrong? Wow, when AA even fails AA.

  • Da.Liva.Delvira - 2011-09-09 10:26

    You and the president may have a mutual trust, but majority of S.A does not trust you!!!

  • Bonani - 2011-11-01 20:27

    Mogoeng Mogoeng or nothing chief justice

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