South Africa: Open Season On the Judiciary


The manner in which attacks on the judiciary have become fairly commonplace is disturbing in that, whatever the lack of merit in this kind of criticism, the legitimacy of a key pillar of constitutional democracy is weakened each time this occurs.

It now seems to be open season on the judiciary whenever a court makes an adverse finding against a party, particularly when that party has a high public profile.

Take last week -- the proverbial ink was hardly dry on the statement issued by the Chief Justice concerning unsubstantiated allegations of judicial corruption, when Dr Iqbal Survé claimed the judge who had granted the Financial Sector Conduct Authority (FSCA) an order to search the premises of Sekunjalo Investment Holdings under supervision of an independent attorney had acted in a flagrantly biased fashion.

It appears the FSCA had approached the court for an order to search the premises of Sekunjalo pursuant to investigations that Ayo Technology Solutions, which is apparently linked to Survé, might have manipulated the share market.

According to reports, Survé claimed the FSCA first approached another judge who refused to grant the interim order before they went to Judge Patrick Gamble whom Survé claimed was a friend...

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