CRL commission takes recommendations on religion to ConCourt

The commission says it wants the highest court to declare if its proposal for the religious sector to be regulated is indeed unconstitutional as suggested by Parliament.

Religious watchdog the CRL Rights Commission briefing the media on its report on the commercialisation of religion. Picture: Thando Kubheka/EWN

JOHANNESBURG - The CRL Rights Commission says it's taking its own recommendations on religion and not Parliament to the Constitutional Court (ConCourt).

The commission says it wants the highest court to decide if its proposal for the religious sector to be regulated is indeed unconstitutional as suggested by Parliament.

The Chapter Nine institutions says it has found there are dangers in having the sector operate without having a regulatory body to hold organisations and churches accountable.

It says one of the matters it brought to Parliament concerned the Ngcobo church, where it was found that a cult had been operating.

The commission's Thoko Mkhwanazi-Xaluva says Parliament's cooperative governance and traditional affairs portfolio shot down all their recommendations despite the thorough work put into it.

“Even in our wildest dreams, we never thought we’d reach a stage where Parliament nullifies every recommendation we’ve made.”

She says it has left the commission with no choice but to take the matter to the ConCourt.

“If they say we’re not in violation of any freedom in the Constitution, then we’ll say to Parliament: So, what now?”

Mkhwanazi-Xaluva says the State Security Department has declared her life to be at high risk following the commission’s probe into the religious sector.

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