Speaker Mapisa-Nqakula to abide by court decision on Judge Hlophe application
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Cape Town - Speaker Nosiviwe Mapisa-Nqakula says she will abide by the court decision after Western Cape High Court Judge President John Hlophe has filed a court application to halt his impeachment.
The Judicial Service Commission had referred Hlophe’s impeachment process to Parliament and MPs were busy processing it.
The justice committee had two weeks ago deliberated on the matter and Parliament was due to continue with it after the elections in November.
But Hlophe has filed court papers to halt the impeachment.
This came as the JSC was to discuss whether to recommend to President Cyril Ramaphosa that Hlophe be suspended pending his removal from office.
Parliament would require a two-thirds majority to remove Hlophe.
Mapisa-Nqakula said they would await the court order before making any move.
“National Assembly Speaker Nosiviwe Mapisa-Nqakula has decided to abide by the application before the Gauteng High Court brought by the Western Cape Judge President, John Hlophe,” said Parliament’s spokesperson Moloto Mothapo.
“Judge President Hlophe seeks an order to stay the proceedings of the National Assembly for his removal from office in terms of section 177 of the Constitution. Section 177 empowers the National Assembly to call for the removal of a judge by a two-thirds majority vote,” he said.
Mapisa-Nqakula has filed papers in the South Gauteng High Court regarding separation of powers and the job of Parliament in the removal of a judge in terms of Section 177 of the Constitution.
“She will contend that the National Assembly, in particular, is currently in its constituency period until November 3, in line with the local government elections timetable. As such, the deliberations on the impeachment process may practically only take place after the constituency period. Therefore, the applicant can accordingly have no apprehension of the process proceeding until November 2021,” Mothapo said.