An ‘important purpose of section 34 [of the Constitution] is to guarantee the protection of the judicial process to persons who have disputes that can be resolved by law’ and that the right of access to court is ‘foundational to the stability of an orderly society. It ensures the peaceful, regulated and institutionalised mechanisms to resolve disputes, without resorting to self-help. The right of access to court is a bulwark against vigilantism, and the chaos and anarchy which it causes. Construed in this context of the rule of law and the principle against self-help in particular, access to court is indeed of cardinal importance’.The right guaranteed s34 would be rendered meaningless if court orders could be ignored with impunity:the underlying purposes of the right — and particularly that of avoidance of self-help — would be undermined if litigants could decide which orders they wished to obey and which they wished to ignore.
DA MP, Annelie Lotriet, seems to be a brave woman, risking alienating some of those who voted for her party “merely” to take a principled but necessary stand. I see she issued the following statement. As someone who as goaded the DA for not taking a stand on issues of racism, I have to give credit where it is due. So here is the statement in full.
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Hofmeyr comments: DA deplores prejudiced views
The Democratic Alliance (DA) deplores the deeply racialist comments published by musician Steve Hofmeyr.
Hofmeyr’s statement that black South Africans “suck up the propaganda of entitlement” in order to “justify their brutality” is profoundly repugnant. It demonstrates deep-seated prejudiced views that are completely inconsistent with the values that inform our constitutional state, it lowers the standard of constructive political and social debate, and it sets back efforts to build a truly nonracial, compassionate South African society.
Regrettably, this statement shows there are still South Africans who are severely detached from the values of modern South African society, and who hold prejudicial views about their fellow citizens.
Every South African who is committed to building a compassionate society should reject Hofmeyr’s comments. They are more reminiscent of a bygone era of racial domination under Apartheid than the kind of conversation one expects to hear in a multiracial democracy in 2010.
Statement issued by Annelie Lotriet, MP, Democratic Alliance Shadow Minister of Arts and Culture, December 7 2010