Hlophe: JSC meeting that recommended my impeachment not lawfully constituted

Western Cape Judge President John Hlophe has launched a two-part urgent application in the High Court to seek, among others, to delay proceedings by the president, which could lead to his suspension, and the National Assembly, which is responsible for his removal.

FILE: Western Cape Judge President John Hlophe. Picture: GCIS

JOHANNESBURG - Embattled Western Cape Judge President John Hlophe on Wednesday said that the Judicial Service Commission (JSC) meeting that recommended that he must be impeached was not lawfully and properly constituted.

Hlophe has launched a two-part urgent application in the High Court to seek, among others, to delay proceedings by the president, which could lead to his suspension, and the National Assembly, which is responsible for his removal.

Hlophe stated various reasons in his court submission as to why he believed the August meeting by the JSC, which decided his fate, should be declared as unconstitutional, invalid and that its decisions be set aside.

He wrote that Constitutional Court justices, Sisi Khamphepe and Boissie Mbha, Gauteng Judge President Dunstan Mlambo and Western Cape Premier Alan Winde should be automatically disqualified from the meeting over conflict of interest, bias or reasonable apprehension of bias.

He further stated that Justice Khamphepe and Justice Mbha lacked constitutional standing to participate in the JSC meeting and consequently their participation rendered the proceedings a “nullity”.

In August, the JSC upheld the judicial tribunal’s findings that Hlophe was guilty of gross misconduct and of trying to interfere with the independence of the court after complaints from two Constitutional Court judges that he approached them to discuss a 2008 case against former President Jacob Zuma and arms manufacturer, Thint.

Part A of Hlophe’s application deals with the urgency of the matter as he wants the court to stay his suspension and impeachment while part B deals with the alleged unlawfulness of the JSC meeting.

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