John Hlophe ‘ready to clear name, move on’

2014-10-03 08:54

Western Cape Judge President John Hlophe is keen to proceed with the Judicial Service Commission tribunal hearing into a complaint of misconduct against him.

This follows a judgment in the South Gauteng High Court last week that dismissed Constitutional Court judges Bess Nkabinde and Chris Jafta’s application challenging the lawfulness of the tribunal, The Star newspaper reported today.

Barnabas Xulu, an attorney for Hlophe, said they were ready to proceed.

“We’re very interested in seeing it proceed as soon as possible so we can clear our client and move on,” he told the newspaper.

The newspaper reported it was understood that Nkabinde and Jafta still had time to indicate whether they would appeal.

On October 3 last year, the tribunal ruled that the misconduct hearing should proceed, despite objections by Jafta, Nkabinde and Hlophe.

During the hearing into the tribunal’s legitimacy, Nkabinde and Jafta’s counsel submitted that the tribunal had not been properly appointed, that its rules were invalid, and that there was no complaint to investigate.

On October 8, the tribunal was postponed.

In 2008, Jafta and Nkabinde alleged that Hlophe approached them while they were considering a corruption case involving President Jacob Zuma and arms company Thint – which is the South African subsidiary of Thales – in the multibillion-rand arms deal.

The judges regarded discussing the case with them as an attempt to improperly influence its outcome and a complaint was lodged.

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