Faizel Patel – 02/03/2021
Freedom Under Law has called for the suspension of Western Cape judge president John Hlophe, pending the conclusion of the proceedings for his removal from office.
The organisation’s chairperson, retired Justice Johann Kriegler was speaking to Radio Islam on Tuesday.
Justice Kriegler made the call after Hlophe acquitted African National Congress (ANC) MP Bongani Bongo on a charge of corruption last week.
It is alleged that Bongo attempted to bribe Eskom inquiry evidence leader Ntuthuzelo Vanara.
Justice Kriegler says Hlophe must be suspended.
“There’s provision in the constitution and the Judicial Service Commission Act for such a suspension when a man is under investigation for an impeachable offence. It has not happened, it should’ve happened. He should not be on the bench.”
Justice Kriegler says there is well-founded suspicion against Hlophe with a number of people giving evidence in support of him.
“They backed him up that he was asked to delay, frustrate the inquiry by paying sick. If he did so, he could name his price and the people at Eskom would make it worth his while and they’d pay him what he asked and Mr Bongo would come and pay him the money.”
Justice Kriegler says Freedom Under Law is not concerned that Bongo was acquitted, but rather Hlophe’s actions which clearly shows he is not fit to be on the bench.
Listen to the interview with Justice Johan Kriegler