Malema urged to apologise to East London magistrate

todayOctober 24, 2023 43

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Civil society group, Judges Matter, has called on EFF leader Julius Malema to apologise to Magistrate Twanet Olivier over his utterances in East London last week.

Addressing his supporters outside the East London Magistrates’ Court, the leader of the red berets slammed the magistrate as incompetent.
Olivier dismissed Malema’s Section 174 application for discharge in his Mdantsane firearm case.
He stands accused alongside his bodyguard, Adriaan Snyman, of discharging an assault rifle in public during the EFF’s fifth birthday celebration in 2018.
Malema came out guns blazing, accusing Olivier of taking instructions from politicians on the direction of her judgment.
“We will come back here to sit and listen to that incompetent magistrate, who comes late to court; who can’t get her papers in order; who can’t read her own judgment; who adjourns court during judgment to go back seat and receive Pravin Gordhan’s call, and receive Ramaphosa’s call, and receive Batohi’s call. When she comes back to give her judgment, she’s shaking like hell because it’s not her judgment – it’s a sponsored judgment,” Malema remarked.
Malema had a similar outburst earlier in the year, when the same magistrate dismissed a recusal application.
Researcher at Judges Matter, Mbekezeli Benjamin, says although judicial officers are not beyond any criticism, such criticism must be substantiated and measured.
“Left unchallenged, Mr Malema’s comments will send a chilling message to other judicial officers that they should not dare issue judgments against powerful figures who command a large audience.”
The organisation has labeled Malema’s comments as an attack on the judiciary and a violation of the Constitution.
The Department of Justice and Correctional Services echoed the same sentiments, strongly condemning the politician.
“We call on all role players to ensure that they uphold the independence of the judiciary by seeking accountability through established channels, not populist channels where due process can be established.”
In a response on X, Malema told the civil society group to go to hell.

Written by: Lindiwe Mpanza

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