John Hlophe to appeal judgment dismissing his challenge to 'gross misconduct' finding

Western Cape Judge President John Hlophe.
Western Cape Judge President John Hlophe.
Photo by Gallo Images / The Times / Moeletsi Mabe
  • Western Cape Judge President John Hlophe will be appealing a Gauteng High Court judgment dismissing his multiple challenges to gross misconduct finding. 
  • His lawyer said the judgment did not "reflect the established jurisprudence on the constitutional and legal issues raised by parties".
  • Last year, a JSC tribunal found Hlophe guilty of impeachable gross misconduct. 

Western Cape Judge President John Hlophe intends appealing the judgment of the Gauteng High Court, which dismissed his multiple challenges to gross misconduct findings against him and a Judicial Service Commission (JSC) process that could lead to his impeachment.

In a statement on Friday, Hlophe's lawyer Barnabas Xulu said the judge and his legal team had "carefully" read the judgment. 

He said: "...fundamentally, the judgment does not reflect the established jurisprudence on the constitutional and legal issues raised by the parties, and the public is entitled to a judgment that accurately interprets the law, faithfully adheres to the established constitutional principles including judicial precedence and the correct approach to interpreting the Constitution. 

"As this case is important for the public’s confidence in the judiciary and the rule of law, and we have accordingly received instructions to take the matter on appeal." 

READ | 'Proof of poor character': High Court eviscerates Hlophe's legal bid to make himself 'untouchable'

Last year, Hlophe was found guilty of impeachable gross misconduct for trying to sway Constitutional Court Justices Bess Nkabinde and Chris Jafta to rule in favour of former president Jacob Zuma in his 2008 bid to invalidate Scorpions search and seizure warrants, News24 reported.  

The warrants led authorities to seize 93 000 pages of evidence that was later used in Zuma's ongoing corruption prosecution.

On Thursday, a full bench of the High Court rejected Hlophe's argument that, rather than voting on whether he should be impeached, the National Assembly should conduct its own investigation into the allegations of misconduct.

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