The Umkhonto we Sizwe Military Veterans Association (MKMVA) noted with dismay the majority judgement of the Constitutional Court in the application by the EFF and other political parties concerning the possible impeachment of President of the Republic, that encroaches in a politically motivated manner into the internal functioning of the national legislature.
In this regard we agree with the minority judgement of Chief Justice and the Deputy Chief Justice who stated in their dissenting judgement that it is a “text book case of judicial overreach”. We furthermore condemn the opportunistic behaviour of the EFF, who when it suited them praised Chief Justice Mogoeng Mogoeng when he concurred with the Constitutional Court’s earlier ruling concerning Nkandla, and the Court’s adverse findings regarding the conduct of the President.
Now that the Chief Justice drew a firm line against the further encroachment by the judiciary into the powers of the Legislative and Executive arms of government, the EFF has no good word for him and attack the Chief Justice and his Deputy without any restraint. In doing so they stand exposed for the unprincipled opportunists that they are. MKMVA appreciates that the Chief Justice has finally – although to our minds rather late – warned about the continuing encroachment of the judiciary in the political realm.
During the last couple of years MKMVA has on numerous occasions raised our serious concerns about the increasing tendency by the judiciary to overreach their powers and to meddle in the politics. We were often left with the distinct impression that an increasing number of judges are allowing their personal political views to influence their judgements, and that they intend their judgements to favour certain political actors and the interests of the White Monopoly Capital (WMC) status quo.
During the last couple of months – and especially in the run-up to the ANC’s National Elective Conference this – such judgements, and their evidently intended effect, went into overdrive. MKMVA came to the conclusion that there are those among the judiciary who have become a political Third Force, and are increasingly abusing their judicial powers to achieve their, and their associates’, political objectives. It is our belief that such conduct endangers the separation of powers as provided for in the Constitution. Sadly, the majority judgement delivered by the Constitutional Court today takes us further down this very dangerous slippery slope.
We call on all South Africans, and especially the judiciary, to take heed of the very serious warning that the two most senior judges in our country issued today. Failure to do so can have very dire consequences indeed, and can undermine the separation of powers principle that is the cornerstone of our Constitutional State to such an extent that we can plunge down the abyss of a full blown constitutional crisis.