Quote of the week

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.

Plasket AJ
Victoria Park Ratepayers' Association v Greyvenouw CC and others (511/03) [2003] ZAECHC 19 (11 April 2003)
5 April 2007

Zille the liberal?

The interview with Helen Zille in the Sowetan is quite reavealing. On most issues she seems to the left of Tony Leon. No wonder Leon’s henchmen do not want her as leader. She seems closer to Reinette Taljaard than to Ryan Coetzee. Some interesting extracts:

Sowetan: [What do you think of] the death penalty?

HZ: If you do not have a good justice system you end up hanging the wrong people. Can you imagine [having] the death penalty and you convict the wrong people in our criminal justice system and with corruption in the police service. Imagine how it can be used, for example, against political opponents.

S: Gay marriages?

HZ: If I had been in parliament I would have voted for it [the Civil Union Bill].

S: What can people do about teenage pregnancies?

HZ: It starts in the home. We need parents who have children when they are ready and want children, who are totally dedicated and committed to their children, who are making every sacrifice and support to help their children develop. This in turn generates a sense of commitment and loyalty from their children. In that atmosphere of love, support and discipline we can start addressing some of these problems.

S: Is Jacob Zuma fit to run for office?

HZ: I don’t think Jacob Zuma is the right person to be president of South Africa. What he has said, what he has done, the actions he has admitted to, show that his judgments are highly questionable. The very fact that as head of the HIV and Aids strategy he admitted to having unprotected sex with a woman he knew was HIV positive, who was young enough to be his daughter [and] when we are facing issues you have just raised like teenage pregnancies, raises a major question about judgment, about leading by example and about leading from the front.

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