DA heads to Constitutional Court to compel Zuma to establish Commission of Inquiry into State Capture
5 December 2016
The DA has filed papers in the Constitutional Court to seek a declaratory order that President Jacob Zuma has violated his constitutional obligations in not giving effect to the remedial action set out in Public Protector’s State Capture report by establishing a Commission of Inquiry by 2 December 2016.
The Public Protector’s remedial action in the State of Capture report required the President to appoint a Commission of Inquiry headed by a judge selected by the Chief Justice within 30 days of the release of the report, in order to further investigate matters of State Capture, particularly areas which the Public Protector was unable to due to time and financial constraints. The President has failed to do so, and is thus once again in breach of the Constitution.
Our application seeks the Constitutional Court to compel President Zuma to give effect to this remedial action and appoint the commission within 10 days of the order of the court.
This follows a letter written to the President’s Office by the DA’s legal team on 25 November 2016 alerting him to the fact that his intention to institute review proceedings against the Report would not absolve him from having to comply with the remedial action within the reports specified timeframes.
The President would have to obtain a court order to stay or suspend the obligation to comply with the Public Protector’s recommendations, which he has not done.
The President’s response to this letter was dismissive, leaving us with no choice but to seek a court order. Indeed, his conduct is a breach of Section 181 (3) of the Constitution which requires all organs of state to “assist and protect” Chapter Nine institutions and ensure their “independence, impartiality, dignity and effectiveness…”
Yet again, President Zuma has violated the Constitution, and his Oath of Office, all in the bid to protect himself from being held accountable for the mafia state he has tried to build.
The DA will not allow him to get away with this. We will use every mechanism and avenue available to us to defend our country’s hard-won Constitution, and the important values which are enshrined in it.
Issued by Mmusi Maimane, Leader of the Democratic Alliance , 5 December 2016