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MKMVA's Maphatsoe hits out at Kriegler over Hlophe criticism

Maphatsoe called on the ANC to tell him off over his criticism of Hlope’s decision to dismiss a corruption case against ANC MP Bongani Bongo.

FILE: Umkhonto weSizwe Military Veterans' Association president Kebby Maphatsoe. Picture: Abigail Javier/Eyewitness News

JOHANNESBURG - The MKMVA’s president Kebby Maphatsoe has hit out at retired Constitutional Court Justice Johann Kriegler.

He's called on the African National Congress (ANC) to tell him off over his criticism of embattled Western Cape Judge President John Hlope’s decision to dismiss a corruption case against ANC Member of Parliament Bongani Bongo.

READ: Former State Security Minister Bongani Bongo cleared of corruption

Kriegler said that last week’s decision to dismiss allegations brought forward by former parliamentary legal advisor Advocate Nthuthuzelo Vanara that Bongo tried to offer him a bribe in 2017 to derail its inquiry into Eskom showed Hlope was not fit to be a judge.

Freedom Under Law has also weighed in on the decision, calling for the judge’s suspension.

Maphatsoe accused the pair of being part of an agenda to destroy the ANC and externally influence the judiciary.

“The same former judges came out to say it’s wrong. That means they are gods of judiciary who now understand better and want to rule from the grave.”

Maphatsoe and his association are some of former President Jacob Zuma’s fiercest allies who have taken to publicly criticising the judiciary over his own decision to defy a Constitutional Court order for him to return to the state capture commission of inquiry.

Maphatsoe said that Zuma’s successor Cyril Ramaphosa and the ANC had come out in defence of the judiciary but have been silent in the midst of criticism levelled against Hlope.

He’s also questioned the silence of black professionals in the legal fraternity.

"They are not special that they can tell them that they are incompetent. And judges are quiet and the ANC is quiet, the ANC must be able to tell Kriegler where to get off, just like it tells us that we must respect the judiciary."

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