Confusion over Basson case

2010-05-06 10:12

Wouter Basson’s application to block the Health Professions Council

of SA’s investigation into his past today started with confusion over whether

the case had already been heard.

Just after entering the court, Judge Everhardt Bertelsmann said a

court order had been issued on November 9 last year to grant Basson’s


Neither of the legal representatives knew of this order.

After a brief adjournment, it was found however that the order was

a mistake by a clerk and it was set aside and Basson’s application went


Basson, former head of the apartheid regime’s chemical and

biological weapons research programme, launched an application in the High Court

in Pretoria to stop the Health Professions Council of South Africa (HPCSA) from

investigating his past.

Basson, who did not attend the proceedings, was expected to ask the

court to block the HPCSA from investigating his involvement in Project Coast,

the research programme that he headed.

The HPCSA has been investigating Basson’s involvement in the

project since 2000, saying that he has been acting unethically.

The cardiologist was acquitted in 2002 on criminal charges related

to his position as head of the SANDF’s Project Coast.

Basson was represented by Advocate Jaap Cilliers, who was also

currently representing former South African police chief Jackie Selebi in his

corruption case, while advocate Gilbert Marcus represented the HPCSA.

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