South Africa’s top judge, Chief Justice Mogoeng Mogoeng has warned SA politicians that they can’t behave in whatever way they desire, stressing that the law applies to all.
The Chief Justice in an interview with Network24, complained bitterly about corruption in South Africa. He hinted that SA politicians are mothers to corruption in the country as he warned that they are not above the law.
Mogoeng wailed that corruption is a threat to South Africa’s Constitution and democracy; stating that it’s unfortunate the nation allowed it to almost entrench itself in the country.
“We should have no sympathy with the practice of corruption. It is something that must be abhorred and should be mercilessly eradicated. And we as judges, our language use should never be of such a nature that it comes across as sympathetic towards corruption,” he admonished.
Addressing politicians, Mogoeng said: “you can’t do as you please because you’re a politician. The law applies to all of us. Should you be allowed to do whatever you want without consequences, just because you are a politician? The answer is no. No one is above the law,” he warned.
He further argued that the independence of the judiciary is imperative as it will better structure the judicial system to take a stance against corruption.
“Nobody should be able to come to court with the certainty that they will get what they want, because only a corrupt and hijacked judiciary would allow that. And there shouldn’t be any possibility that anyone can hijack the judiciary.
I’ve been making the point since I was appointed and many people misunderstood. Judges shouldn’t only be independent of leaders of the executive or of Parliament.
They should be independent of any person or body which has the potential to influence them excessively. That includes big businesses, opposition parties and even the media,” he identified.
Many have been against Mogoeng’s appointment as Chief Justice. But his recent judgment on the Nkandla issue earned him respect. Mogoeng however, said he’s no hero and was just doing his job.
“I don’t want to be a hero. I am not trying to leave a legacy. That should never be a factor. One has a job to do and you are paid for doing that job every month and that is what I am doing. I have said it since I was appointed, my soul is not for sale.”