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Hlophe to face conduct tribunal - report

The 'Business Day' said Western Cape Judge President John Hlophe will face a judicial conduct tribunal.

Western Cape Judge President John Hlophe is seen at the Judicial Service Commission preliminary hearing into his alleged attempts to influence a judgment relating to President Jacob Zuma in Johannesburg, on 30 July 2009. Picture: Werner Beukes/SAPA

JOHANNESBURG - Western Cape Judge President John Hlophe will reportedly face a judicial conduct tribunal.

An announcement is yet to be made by the Judicial Services Commission (JSC), but Business Day on Thursday reported it received confirmation of the decision by two independent sources.

The apparent decision follows recommendations by the JSC's conduct committee in September to appoint a tribunal.

It suggested that if the complaint against Hlope was established, it would indicate gross misconduct and he could be impeached.

The Supreme Court of Appeal (SCA) ruled that the JSC has to decide whether or not Hlope is guilty of gross misconduct or not.

In 2008, the Constitutional Court complained that Hlophe tried to influence two of its judges to rule in favour of President Jacob Zuma in a case involving the arms deal.

After a lengthy back-and-forth process of JSC hearings and court challenges, the Bloemfontein court ruled in favour of Western Cape Premier Helen Zille and lobby group Freedom Under Law (FUL), who lodged the case against the judge president.