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Court rules Rica Act inconsistent with Constitution

Investigative journalism unit amaBhungane challenged the legality around the RICA in 2017.

Picture: SAPS

JOHANNESBURG - The High Court in Johannesburg on Monday declared that parts of the Communications and Provision of Communication-Related Information (Rica) Act unlawful.

Investigative journalism unit amaBhungane challenged the legality around the Rica in 2017.

Rica was used to place journalist Sam Sole under surveillance while he was investigating why the state dropped corruption charges against former President Jacob Zuma.

Judge Roland Sutherland ruled that the Rica Act was inconsistent with the Constitution and therefore suspended it for two years to allow Parliament to correct the defects.

Sole said this act was clearly an invasion of privacy.

“The safeguards that are built into Rica to prevent abuses of surveillance are insufficient to do the constitutional job that’s required of them - that was the argument we made on about six counts [and] we basically won on each count,” he said.

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