Chief Justice Mogoeng Mogoeng's 12 most powerful Nkandla judgement quotes

31 March 2016 - 16:49 By Marzanne Van Den Berg

The Constitutional Court on Thursday found that President Jacob Zuma’s failure to comply with the Public Protector’s remedial order‚ that he must repay taxpayer cash spent on non-security upgrades at his private home‚ is inconsistent with his obligations to uphold‚ defend and respect the Constitution as the supreme law of South Africa. Here are key quotes from the unanimous judgment‚ delivered by Chief Justice Mogoeng Mogoeng: ON THE PRESIDENT:"State resources belong to the public‚ as does State power. The repositories of these resources and power are to use them‚ on behalf and for the benefit of the public."“Whoever and whatever poses a threat to our sovereignty‚ peace and prosperity‚ he [the president] must fight.”“The President failed to uphold‚ defend and respect the Constitution as the supreme law of the land.”“[Zuma] was duty-bound to‚ but did not‚ assist and protect the Public Protector so as to ensure her independence‚ impartiality‚ dignity and effectiveness by complying with her remedial action.“[Zuma] did not challenge the [public protector’s] report through a judicial process. He appears to have been content with the apparent vindication of his position by the [Police] Minister’s favourable recommendations and considered himself to have been lawfully absolved of liability.”"The President is expected to endure graciously and admirably and fulfil all obligations imposed on him‚ however unpleasant."“Any failure to fulfil shared constitutional obligations by any member of the Executive would… be attributable to the President as his own failure. After all he appoints them and they are answerable to him.”ON THE PUBLIC PROTECTOR:“[The Public Protector] is the embodiment of a biblical David‚ that the public is‚ who fights the most powerful and very well-resourced Goliath‚ that impropriety and corruption by government officials are.”“[The Public Protector’s] investigative powers are not supposed to bow down to anybody‚ not even at the door of the highest chambers of raw State power.”“The Public Protector would arguably have no dignity and be ineffective if her directives could be ignored willy-nilly.”ON PARLIAMENT:“[T]he National Assembly was duty-bound to hold the President accountable by facilitating and ensuring compliance with the decision of the Public Protector.”“[T]here was everything wrong with the National Assembly stepping into the shoes of the Public Protector‚ by passing a resolution that purported effectively to nullify the findings made and remedial action taken by the Public Protector and replacing them with its own findings and ‘remedial action’.”

This article is reserved for Sunday Times subscribers.

A subscription gives you full digital access to all Sunday Times content.

Already subscribed? Simply sign in below.

Registered on the BusinessLIVE, Business Day or Financial Mail websites? Sign in with the same details.

Questions or problems? Email or call 0860 52 52 00.