Remedial or restitutionary equality are not in themselves a deviation from, or invasive of, the right to equality guaranteed by the Constitution. They are not “reverse discrimination” or “positive discrimination” … They are integral to the reach of our equality protection… Equality before the law protection in section 9(1) and measures to promote equality in section 9(2) are both necessary and mutually reinforcing but may sometimes serve distinguishable purposes.. However, what is clear is that our Constitution and in particular section 9 thereof, read as a whole, embraces for good reason a substantive conception of equality inclusive of measures to redress existing inequality. Absent a positive commitment progressively to eradicate socially constructed barriers to equality and to root out systematic or institutionalised under-privilege, the constitutional promise of equality before the law and its equal protection and benefit must, in the context of our country, ring hollow.
President Ramaphosa’s evidence was that most of those appointments had nothing to do with the Deployment Committee. He however stopped short of implicating former President Zuma in wrongdoing. He did not explain why the ANC allowed the former President to bypass a critical party structure so frequently. This is especially surprising considering that both he and Mr Mantashe vigorously defended the importance and necessity of cadre deployment at the Commission, as well as the party’s insistence that all members are beholden to the decisions of its structures (democratic centralism). According to President Ramaphosa, some of those appointments did go through the Deployment Committee, but the Committee did not know that those individuals would engage in any corrupt acts. The unfortunate implication of this is that the Deployment Committee had been unable to select or recommend individuals who are “fit for purpose.” It had repeatedly recommended individuals alleged to be involved in corruption or other unethical behaviour, as well as individuals with public ties to the Gupta family, who were publicly known since 2011 to be involved in corruption.BACK TO TOP