by SAVIOUS KWINIKA
JOHANNESBURG, (CAJ News) – THE Pretoria High Court is today (Thursday) set to hand down judgment against former South African president, Jacob Zuma, over his alleged role in the closing down of the Southern African Development Community (SADC) Tribunal in 2012.
The Law Society of South Africa, four dispossessed Zimbabwean commercial farmers and two Zimbabwean agricultural companies applied to join the case against the closure of Southern Africa’s regional court.
They are arguing Zuma, by signing the Protocol which took away the rights of SADC citizens to go to the tribunal on human rights issues, was not acting consistently with his constitutional duties.
The aggrieved parties argue Zuma acted in an “irrational” manner by not then going through the necessary steps to ratify his action through Parliament hence there was no legitimate government objective in Zuma’s action.
Coincidentally, the beleaguered Zuma, who resigned recently, has been accused of undermining South Africa’s constitution on domestic issues.
This proved to be among the violations that led to his downfall after almost a decade in power.
SADC Tribunal Rights Watch spokesperson, Ben Freeth, who is among the farmers disposed of land they laid claim to in Zimbabwe, was confident of a favourable outcome after deliberations by the Pretoria High Court.
“All arguments went well and they were completed in a single day, with excellent engagement from the judges,” said Freeth.
The SADC created the tribunal in 2005 at the height of land seizures by Zimbabwe.