White cop wins AA challenge

2010-02-26 11:09

Johannesburg - In a landmark affirmative action case on Friday, the Labour Court ruled that the South African Police Service should promote Captain Renate Barnard to superintendent.

Trade union Solidarity, on behalf of Barnard, approached the Labour Court to ensure Barnard's promotion.

The court found in favour of Solidarity and Barnard and ordered the SA Police Service to pay the applicant's costs.

Solidarity general secretary Dirk Hermann said the judgment was a victory for all South Africans.

"We are absolutely delighted. The judgment brought about a new direction in affirmative action," he said after the judgment was handed down.

"This means for the police service that merit is also critical for affirmative action."

Recommended unanimously

Barnard, at the time of the dispute, was responsible for investigating priority and ordinary complaints against the SA Police service. In 2005 a superintendent level position was created by the police to improve service to the public in view of handling complaints. In that year Barnard and six other applicants applied for the position. An interview panel gave her 86.7% for the interview and recommended her unanimously.

"Captain Barnard was 17.5% better than the next applicant from the designated group. In view of this fact the interview panel recommended that should she not get the position, it will adversely affect service delivery," Hermann said.

However the Saps divisional commissioner recommended that the position not be filled, saying that her appointment would not promote representation.

This, said Hermann, was despite the fact that Barnard was a woman and therefore part of the designated group in terms of the Employment Equity Act.

After pursuing internal grievance procedures without success, the case was referred to the Labour Court.


Barnard, on Friday, wearing a teal ankle length dress told reporters outside the court how happy the ruling had made her.

"It was not an easy road, but I am so relieved," she said.

"Thank you to my father in heaven and to Solidarity."

The judgment stipulated that she would be promoted to the post of superintendent with effect from July 2006.

  • Ian Rhodes - 2010-02-26 11:17

    Hooray! I just sincerely hope that this finding helps to bring to an end this racist and discriminatory legislation. Let each person be judged on their own merits in an absolute impartial and fair manner.

  • SimonP - 2010-02-26 11:17

    At last sense prevails. AA is a racist policy and should be scrapped.

  • Benzo - 2010-02-26 11:18

    the "good news" story of the day. Sanity prevails!!!

  • anomx - 2010-02-26 11:20

    wow...great news

  • MarcP - 2010-02-26 11:22

    Maybe a non-racial society is still in the cards.
    Good for her win.
    White males on the other hand, are still screwed.

  • Dave - 2010-02-26 11:22

    About time there was some fairness

  • Matt Nel - 2010-02-26 11:22

    Finally - good people are getting back into top positions - down with this stupid policy. SA would be growing like India in terms of GDP if there was no AA. Learn from your mistakes ANC and drop this!

  • hopeful - 2010-02-26 11:23

    What a great outcome! Performance based promotions can only help the SAP improve its service delivery.

  • Koos - 2010-02-26 11:23

    so the reverse begins.

  • Vrye Denker - 2010-02-26 11:25

    Sanity has prevailed for once.

  • Clive - 2010-02-26 11:25

    Great - unfortunately she will now become a victim of this racist obsessed goverment.

  • GJD - 2010-02-26 11:25

    WELL DONE RENATE and SOLIRARITY.. I hope this paves away to get rid of this ridiculous practise...

  • Jannie - 2010-02-26 11:25

    Baie bly vir jou Renate jy verdien dit. Wys net weereens hoe verkeerd regstellende aksie is, en dit is die groot rede hoekom soveel besighede, staatsdepartemente om nie eens te praat van die SAP nie, in soveel gemors is.

  • Phinah - 2010-02-26 11:28

    A well deserved judgement. This has got absolutely nothing to do with the colour of a person's skin, but the ability to accomplish a task.... Thanks so much to the judge who got stuck to the law and common sense.

  • Siviwe - 2010-02-26 11:29

    Eish, this is a disaster. The transformation of the judiciary has to be fast-tracked. I will consult with president Malema for a reflection on this. This is a blow to black people! Maybe the EEA has to be scrapped and hopefully replaced with something else or included in the constitution what do you think, fellow South Africans black and white?

  • lippies - 2010-02-26 11:30

    trouble is she may get the post, but bosses don't like losing , and they will counter her at every turn they can

  • Robert - 2010-02-26 11:53

    Well Done! However, the drama will continue... Lets wait for a stupid idiotic comment from Malema!

  • Chris - 2010-02-26 12:28

    It great to see a victory when Goliath losses to a David. Congrats to the Victor. And the Victor is South Africa. AA will wither in time. We are a teenage country with so many things right, as per Mr Ackerman.We all need patience and detemination.

  • Leon - 2010-02-26 12:28

    Fantastic news. I love the idea of merit being a critical part of earning a place in the job market - may the best man / woman win.
    But you'll have to celebrate with JC le Roux as all the expensive stuff is being quaffed at Luthuli house.

  • Andre - 2010-02-26 12:28

    Phinah, well said!!

  • zodac mortar - 2010-02-26 12:30

    if iwas bheki cele, i would fire the official who dealt with this matter from my department. he is so stupid he cant even apply his mind to issues. this is the extend of how far corruption goes in the public service. he promoted his friend

  • ANTJIES - 2010-02-26 12:30


  • Lee - 2010-02-26 12:31

    Bottom line - all people should be able to effectively do the job for which they are paid a salary. Merit and not colour should be the criteria for landing a job and to keep the job means working at it willingly and with enthusiasm - no golden handshakes when getting rid of poor performers. Hopefully her high scoring at her interviews does indicate that she is more than capable of doing the job well and that the bosses will, in fact, respect this!

  • elmo@Siviwe - 2010-02-26 12:31

    I don't see South Africans as black and white, I just see South Africans!! Best person for the job, end of story. Independent judiciary, end of story. Correct decision, end of story. That's what I think. Eish..

  • @ALL - 2010-02-26 12:31

    Can someone help us with the copy of this jugdement before we say Hooray or ah..........ah.

  • Igor - 2010-02-26 12:33

    This good news for all South Africans, a victory for justice and common sense.

  • Noel - 2010-02-26 12:33

    Eish..I cant believe a job can be given to a person based on competance and not on colour. This is really bad for the people.

  • Ebi - 2010-02-26 12:33

    "Barnard, on Friday, wearing a teal ankle length dress" & wonder what top she had on to match that...

  • Gerrie - 2010-02-26 12:33

    Unfortunately I have to agree with Clive and lippies. Renate will be a target and a victim.

  • @Siviwe - 2010-02-26 12:35

    We know you're just some white dude trying to elicit reactions from other people on this site by making loaded statements!

  • Philimon - 2010-02-26 12:35

    I am all for transformation but first and foremost I want service delivery. Only with capable people will we be able to teach our next generation that work needs to be done properly. Siviwe, I dont agree with you that this is a blow to us. Dont you want your children to be taught by someone who can teach them something instead of somebody that got the job because he is one of us. We need to stand together and make sure our children get best education so that they can be put into these positions because they can do the job best.

  • mxhosakazi - 2010-02-26 12:37

    yes she might have the position but who is at the top? we will frustrate her she will even consider becoming a security guard - perhaps in my house. You have occupied top positions all these years, you are plain greedy!!! Let go and give others a chance!!!

  • Perplexed - 2010-02-26 12:37

    Was just wondering in the context of this article how the fact that she was "wearing a teal ankle length dress" was relevant? What am I missing?

  • Neil - 2010-02-26 12:38

    Pity 15 years on and we get judged by our colour and not by our ability. Maybe??? there is a bit of light at the end of the tunnel for the white race.

  • Christa van der Walt - 2010-02-26 12:38

    Well done Renate!

  • HaggardGnome - 2010-02-26 12:39

    Now the next step is to abolish the racist Affirmative Action policies completely. Let us have the best man/woman for the job!

  • Teutonic Knight @ Siviwe - 2010-02-26 12:44

    Let me revise:
    Anything the ANC touches turns into a disaster we need to reflect on and transform racist policies because it is a blow to white people. The EEA has to be scrapped and non-racial policies included in the constitution. Is thits what you meant?

  • Eddie Golding - 2010-02-26 12:46

    Had it not been for our stupid government, non of this would have taken place (What a waste of money and time!)
    As is turns - well done to Renate Barnard and good luck - which you'll now need more than ever.

  • stick - 2010-02-26 12:47

    I am shocked. First the favourable ruling by the court on White Zim farmers who can lay claims for compensation from Zim assest in SA, now this. I cannot take the good news man. I'm going to go drinking...

  • Pra AA - 2010-02-26 12:49

    what a pity, the should take the matter on review

  • European-African - 2010-02-26 12:50

    Let's not miss what this actually means: that the government of the day are a bunch of racists and are *not* interested in white folks. RACISTS!

  • Ghost - 2010-02-26 12:51

    @Siviwe - You are obviously only trying to get some reaction. Don't be childish...

  • RupDog - 2010-02-26 12:51

    @Siviwe: Your pulling our legs right? You can't be a Malema supported, they can't read or write. LOL....

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