Search for chief justice Mogoeng Mogoeng's replacement at an advanced stage: Presidency

02 October 2021 - 10:47
Chief justice Mogoeng Mogoeng's 10-year tenure officially ends in October. File photo.
Chief justice Mogoeng Mogoeng's 10-year tenure officially ends in October. File photo.
Image: Sebabatso Mosamo/Sunday Times

The panel set up by President Cyril Ramaphosa to compile a shortlist of candidates for the position of chief justice has met to thrash out the procedure for its work.

Chief justice Mogoeng Mogoeng’s term ends on October 11. The panel, chaired by judge Navanethem Pillay, comprises justice minister Ronald Lamola, former justice minister Jeff Radebe, former public protector Thuli Madonsela, co-chair of the SA National Aids Council Mmapaseka Steve Letsike and Ziyad Motala, professor of law at Howard University School of Law.

Ramaphosa’s acting spokesperson Tyrone Seale said “all panel members confirmed their acceptance of the task and declared that they had no conflict of interest” during their inaugural meeting on Thursday.

Seale said the panel deliberated on procedural and “substantive matters” of its work.

“The panel has been appointed by Ramaphosa to openly, transparently and expeditiously compile a shortlist of suitable candidates for the position of chief justice,” said Seale.

“The president has decided that South Africans should take part in the choice of the next chief justice as part of promoting transparency and encouraging public participation. The first meeting of the panel took place in hybrid format with three panel members meeting in person and three members joining on a virtual platform.

“All discussions and decisions taken with regard to the terms of reference and criteria for assessment of the nominees agreed upon by the panel will be published in due course as a matter of keeping the public abreast of this process.”

Seale said the panel has to report to Ramaphosa by October 29.  The President invited nominations for the next chief justice in September. He decided that “South Africans should take part in the choice of the next chief justice”. Nominations closed on Friday.

According to the presidency, “all nominations and supporting documents (saved for personal information) will be made public on the presidency website” on Monday. Objections to the nominees should reach the presidency by October 15.

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