Chief Justice ordered to apologise for pro-Israeli utterances
4 March 2021
Breaking News: A significant victory for anti-racists. A letter and the decision concerning the SA BDS Coalition’s complaint against Chief Justice Mogoeng Mogoeng for his pro-apartheid Israel and Zionist utterances has just been received.
The Judicial Conduct Committee has ordered the Chief Justice to apologise unconditionally and retract his statements following complaints by the SA BDS Coalition and others.
After a closely argued, well considered and comprehensive 67-page decision, Judge Phineas Mojapelo insists on the following remedial action:
“The respondent CJ [Chief Justice Mogoeng Mogoeng] shall issue an apology and retraction worded as follows:
Apology and Retraction
I, Mogoeng Mogoeng, Chief Justice of the Republic of South Africa, hereby apologise unconditionally for becoming involved in political controversy through my utterances in the online seminar (webinar) hosted by The Jerusalem Post on 23 June 2020, in which I participated.
I further hereby unreservedly retract and withdraw the following statement which I uttered subsequent thereto or other words to the same effect: “I stand by my refusal to retract or apologise for any part of what I said during the webinar. Even if 50 million people were to march every day for 10 years for me to do so, I would not apologise. If I perish, I perish.”
I reaffirm my recognition for the statutory authority of the Judicial Conduct Committee of the Judicial Service Commission established in terms of Part 11 of the JSC Act 9 of 1994 to decide on any complaint of alleged judicial misconduct against me and all judges in the Republic of South Africa. 243.3
The respondent CJ must, within ten (10) days of this Decision read the above Apology and Retraction at a meeting of serving Justices of the Constitutional Court and release a copy thereof under his signature to the OCJ and to the media in the normal manner in which the Constitutional Court and the OCJ issue media releases.
JUDGE P M MOJAPELO (MEMBER OF THE JUDICIAL CONDUCT COMMITTEE)
Statement issued by Ronnie Kasrils, South African BDS Coalition, 4 March 2021