Ruling on Cliff's reinstatement set for Friday

Auditions for the 2016 season of Idols starts on the same day.

FILE: Media personality Gareth Cliff arrives at the High Court in Johannesburg for his court case against broadcaster M-Net on 26 January 2016. Picture: Reinart Toerien/EWN.

JOHANNESBURG - With only a few days left until the 2016 season of _Idols _kicks off, fired judge Gareth Cliff will have to wait a while longer to hear whether he will return to his position on the show.

But his lawyers say they are confident the outcome of the court ruling will be in their favour.

Yesterday Cliff brought an urgent application before the High Court in Johannesburg calling for his reinstatement after he was fired for a comment he made regarding a racist Facebook post.

M-Net says it fired him because his tweet on a racist post by Penny Sparrow created an overwhelming view that he is a poster child for racism.

He came under fire when he weighed in on the Sparrow saga after the former estate agent called black beachgoers at Durban's beaches, monkeys.

In a tweet, Cliff wrote that "people don't understand free speech at all".

Judge Caroline Nicholls says by 10 o'clock on Friday morning, Cliff will know whether or not he will be back on talent search show_, _which starts its auditions on the same day.

His lawyer, Eric Mabuza says "I'm optimistic there is confidence as when we started these proceedings, but fortunately we also had a fair hearing, we were allowed to argue the matter almost all day."

The argument in court has been whether or not Cliff had a contractual agreement with M-Net at the time of his axing.

If his legal team successfully proves an agreement his claim of an unfair dismissal could be found to be true.

Listen: EWN's Dineo Bendile updating us on Gareth Cliff Court Battle Against Broadcaster M - Net


M- Net says Cliff isn't simply entitled to be reinstated as a judge on talent search show idols and says he isn't at liberty to decide what remedial action it takes.

They questioned why Cliff didn't raise the alleged deviation from his contract immediately after his dismissal from Idols.

Instead he made comments about how the show was more of a pastime for him anyway.

But defense lawyer Dali Mpofu says Cliff didnt mention the contract because he hadn't anticipated that the M- Net would later publically deny having confirmed his return to idols.

While Mpofu says M-Net should give the radio personality his job back even if only on an interim basis.