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ConCourt hears Employment Equity plan is flawed

The case could have wide implications on how Employment Equity is applied.

FILE: 10 employees and trade union Solidarity have taken the department to the highest court. Picture: Supplied.

JOHANNESBURG - The Constitutional Court has heard arguments that Correctional Services' Employment Equity plan is flawed and allows for discrimination.

In a case that could have wide implications on how Employment Equity is applied, 10 employees and trade union Solidarity have taken the department to the highest court saying they were passed over for a promotion because they don't fit the national demographics.

The case goes to the heart of legal questions around affirmative action and whether it would be fair for a national government department to say that only a small percentage of its workers in the Western Cape can be coloured.

For Deputy Chief Justice Dikgang Moseneke, the employment equity plan doesn't seem to allow any deviation.

"This plan does not reflect flexibility on its face, just by looking at it."

Advocate Marumo Moerane who represents the correctional services department, disagrees.

"The plan itself provides for deviation."

Lawyers representing the employees say it's unfair that they weren't promoted because coloured people are over represented in the Western Cape and Employment Equity plan should consider regional demographics.

Judgment as been reserved.

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