SACP and ANCYL mobilisation against the judiciary malicious - COPE

Dennis Bloem says the Constitution is a personal gift to the youth, autographed by Nelson Mandela himself


3 July 2015

The gulf between the Congress of the People and the ruling party grows wider all the time. We believe implicitly in the rule of law. The ruling party does not. We accept that the Constitution is the supreme law. Top leaders in the ANC, on the other hand, continuously attack it. We see a strong nexus between the rule of law and strong economic growth. President Zuma and his administration do not.

We teach youth in our party to accept the Constitution as a personal gift to them, autographed by Nelson Mandela himself. The tripartite alliance seeks to trash it. Every day we are at odds with the ANC because it is practising ruinous politics and wrecking the economy. It is bringing South Africa to the very edge of a major crisis.

The decision by the SA Communist Party and the ANC Youth League to embark on mass protests against South Africa’s judges is ill conceived, irresponsible, and malicious. The fact that President Zuma says nothing at all on the matter is both revealing and tragic. His shortcomings as a President become glaringly apparent every day. He is a huge liability to the nation.

Nelson Mandela would have summoned the SACP second secretary Solly Mapaila and other organisers to his office. He would have explained to them that the constitution was the supreme law, by necessity as well as choice. He would have explained that everyone, including himself, was equal before the law. He would have pointed out that the law is mighty and everyone needed to bow before the law. Judges, he would have explained to them, only implement the law. They do not make the law. He would have educated them in the rigours of the law and an appropriate respect for the judiciary. He would have demanded that they go out and protect the Constitution and applaud the judiciary for dispensing justice. That is how he would have advised them to secure a prosperous future for themselves.

The leaders of the tripartite alliance, unfortunately, are not giving the SA Communist Party and the ANC Youth League good advice on equality and impartiality before the law. They are allowing emotions to cloud the judgment of young people. In so doing they are encouraging the youth to self destruct. In a year or two, half of South Africans in the 15 - 35 age group will have no prospects of finding a job. That is what they should be marching against. Their very future is in jeopardy.

These young protesters should know that if President Zuma had appointed Blade Nzimande and Gwede Mantashe as judges on the recommendation of the Judicial Commission, if they had the qualification, these two gentlemen would have had to uphold the Constitution and give judgments on solid legal principles without fear or favour. That is what they would have had to do. 

For these young people to assert that after 21 years of democracy the judiciary remains the “least transformed organ of the state” is utter nonsense. It is also both stupid and shocking of the SA Communist Party and the ANC Youth League to say that the judiciary is “encroaching on the terrains of the executive and Parliament”. We challenge President Zuma to repeat this statement.

These new shocking developments prompt us to ask, "Where are the adults in all of this? Where are the leaders with a moral backbone in the ruling party?"

For the tripartite alliance to unleash their stormtroopers on our internationally respected judiciary is to undermine our democracy and deal another massive blow to our reeling economy. It is shocking behaviour.

The stark difference between Congress of the People and the ruling party shows every day.

Statement issued by Dennis Bloem, COPE spokesperson, July 3 2015