‘I don’t think he’ll survive this’: Helen Zille on judge Hlophe’s ‘gross misconduct’ findings

12 April 2021 - 12:40
DA federal chair Helen Zille says the finding against Western Cape judge president John Hlophe is 'a huge victory for due process, the rule of law and the defence of SA’s constitution'. File photo.
DA federal chair Helen Zille says the finding against Western Cape judge president John Hlophe is 'a huge victory for due process, the rule of law and the defence of SA’s constitution'. File photo.
Image: RUVAN BOSHOFF

DA federal council chairperson Helen Zille has weighed in on the Judicial Conduct Tribunal’s findings against Western Cape judge president John Hlophe, saying he will not survive the consequences.

On Sunday, Zille welcomed the news after Hlophe was found guilty of “gross misconduct”.

She noted the judgment on Hlophe was passed years after she first laid a complaint against the Judicial Service Commission (JSC).

In 2010, when she was Western Cape premier, Zille legally challenged the JSC’s decision which ruled Hlophe not guilty of gross misconduct in a corruption matter involving former president Jacob Zuma and French arms company Thales.

“I do not think judge Hlophe will survive this,” said Zille on the weekend.

“This matter once again shows why it is so important for the DA to keep doing the right thing, keep challenging the abuse of power and manipulation of institutions, and we do make progress eventually.”

Zille said the finding was a huge victory for due process, the rule of law and the defence of SA’s constitution.

“The critical question we must now ask is whether judge Hlophe was paid with SSA [State Security Agency] funds under Project Justice to seek to improperly influence the two Constitutional Court judges. We must keep digging. The JSC is massively failing on this front as well,” said Zille.

Hlophe was found guilty of gross misconduct after the tribunal compiled a report on a complaint lodged by the justices of the Constitutional Court against Hlophe.

The tribunal unanimously found Hlophe was “improperly attempted to influence” two judges of the ConCourt.

TimesLIVE reported that if the commission agrees with the finding of the tribunal, Hlophe could become the first judge in democratic SA to be removed from office.

The JSC is expected to meet later on Monday to determine Hlophe’s fate.


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