EFF lose bid to declare Riotous Assemblies Act unconstitutional

EFF leader Julius Malema's application to declare the Riotous Assemblies Act unconstitutional has been dismissed by the High Court in Pretoria.

EFF leader Julius Malema and EFF secretary-general Gordich Gardee at the High Court in Pretoria on 4 July 2019. Picture: Kayleen Morgan/EWN

JOHANNESBURG - EFF leader Julius Malema's application to declare the Riotius Assemblies Act unconstitutional has been dismissed by the High Court in Pretoria.

Malema challenged the constitutionality of the Act, saying the State was using apartheid-era legislation to prosecute him.

The charges relate to two incidents back in 2014 and 2016 in which the EFF leader allegedly incited party members to invade unoccupied land.

It was in 2014 when Malema told supporters in Bloemfontein to seize unoccupied land. In 2016, he repeated the call in Newcastle.

The case was brought by lobby group AfriForum.

Judge Aubrey Ledwada delivered judgment on Thursday.

"In terms of Section 172 1A of the Constitution, Section 18 2B of the Riotous Assemblies Act, 17, of 1956, is declared unconstitutional and invalid to the limited extent dealing with the sentence."

Speaking to journalist after the court proceedings, Malema slammed the African National Congress (ANC).

"They've had to go into a dustbin of history to dust off an apartheid law to trial us [sic]. Shame on them because the court says to them now that this is unconstitutional. Visionary leadership would have seen that like the EFF saw it."