Supreme Court of Appeal dismisses UDM appeal against defamation ruling
The UDM and party leader Bantu Holomisa have lost a bid to appeal against an earlier court ruling, barring them from making defamatory statements about investment company Harith General Partners.
The appeal was dismissed by the Supreme Court of Appeal, with costs for two counsel, on Monday.
Harith was one of seven applicants who applied for an interim interdict in the North Gauteng High Court in July 2018 against Holomisa and his party to “cease” and “desist” from making defamatory remarks about the company.
The statements had been published on the party's website and social media platforms.
Judge Vivian Tlhapi ruled at the time that the UDM and Holomisa be interdicted from making or repeating those claims.
Harith CEO Sipho Makhubela said in a statement on Monday the company felt vindicated by the latest ruling against a “sustained fishing expedition” by Holomisa.
“From day one when Mr Holomisa made spurious allegations against us, we told our stakeholders that he was factually wrong, and his allegations were unfounded and malicious. We, therefore, welcome the Supreme Court of Appeal’s decision to strike Mr Holomisa’s appeal, with costs,” said Makhubela.
“This victory paves the way for us to complete our defamation and damages action, which is still pending against Mr Holomisa and the UDM.”
Holomisa told TimesLIVE that the fight was not over.
“We’ve taken note of the ruling by the judge that our matter is not appealable but we’ll be proceeding to the Constitutional Court, to argue that it is appealable,” he said.