Legal Articles and Guides
The indigenous community of Salem in the Eastern Cape does not have exclusive rights to the thousand hectares of valuable farmland that makes up the Salem Commonage‚ the Constitutional Court ruled yesterday in dismissing the settlers’ appeal against judgments of the Land Claims Court and the SCA.
A settlement between thousands of sick gold miners and the mining industry is possible before the end of the year, according to one of the attorneys for the sick mineworkers, notes a GroundUp report. Upwards of 100 000 mineworkers and former mineworkers, and their dependents, are claiming damages for contracting silicosis and/or TB from exposure to dust underground.
The judiciary is under fire again from sections of the ANC following Friday’s Gauteng High Court (Pretoria) judgment (see report below), which found President Jacob Zuma had been ‘reckless’ to the point of lying in unlawfully paying off Advocate Mxolisi Nxasana to vacate the office of National Director of Public Prosecutions (NDPP), and effectively labelled current NPA boss Shaun Abrahams a Zuma lackey.
Home Affairs Minister Ayanda Dlodlo will approach the SCA to challenge the Oppenheimer family’s court victory in October to run a private international terminal at OR Tambo International Airport. A Business Day report says on Friday the department lost the second round in a battle that has pitched the Oppenheimers against the Guptas when the Gauteng High Court (Pretoria) dismissed its application for leave to appeal against the October judgment.
A detailed account of how a last-minute, hand-written amendment to a contract forced the Industrial Development Corporation (IDC) to trade R256m for now-worthless shares in the Gupta family’s Oakbay Resources and Energy at inflated prices in 2014 is contained in a lengthy City Press report. It notes the controversial loan restructuring agreement the IDC signed with Oakbay in March 2014 has been made public in the state financier’s belated court application to reclaim the money – and outstanding capital on a 2010 loan – totalling R287.5m.
The CCMA has found that former SARS spokesperson Adrian Lackay was not constructively dismissed. A News24 report says Lackay – who had worked at SARS for nearly 12 years – resigned in February 2015, alleging that the organisation had ‘made his continued employment intolerable’. CCMA Commissioner Joyce Nkopane found that he had not lodged a formal grievance and was not able to prove that his employer made his working conditions intolerable.
The legal battle between Springbok legend Joost van der Westhuizen’s brother and his estranged celebrity wife Amor Vittone over his last will and testament has been postponed indefinitely. A Pretoria News report says the will has been a bone of contention since Joost’s death in February. The rugby star's brother, Pieter van der Westhuizen, and then attorney, Ferdinand Hartzenberg, turned to the Gauteng High Court (Pretoria) to declare the will drawn up in September 2015 as his last.
With the Constitutional Court having refused to hear the R60bn class action suit launched against the major lending banks, the case is heading to the Gauteng High Court (Johannesburg) early in the new year. The class action suit was filed in the Constitutional Court in August by more than 225 applicants whose homes were repossessed and sold at sheriffs’ auctions for a fraction of their market value.
The Constitutional Court has confirmed that a section of the Public Service Act‚ which permitted an employer to make unilateral deductions from an employee’s salary‚ is unconstitutional. The court confirmed the order by the Labour Court in January‚ which concerned a health manager who was erroneously overpaid for a number of years. Itunu Ibogu‚ a senior administrator at Charlotte Maxeke Hospital‚ found herself owing the Gauteng Health Department close to R800 000 after being erroneously appointed in the wrong position in 2010.
Forensic investigator Paul O’Sullivan’s lawyers this week served a notice of an intention to institute legal proceedings against the Minister of Police, National Commissioner of SAPS and the Minister of Justice and Constitutional Development for unlawful arrest, torture, kidnapping, deprivation of liberty, defamation/crimen injuria, trauma, intimidation and harassment, and malicious and vexatious prosecution. He is seeking R193 227 692.
The owners of a Cape Town home where a toddler suffered severe brain damage after falling into the pool have won their fight to avoid paying tens of millions of rands in damages, notes a TimesLIVE report. They went to the SCA after the Western Cape High Court said they should bear two-thirds of the liability for the accident because they had been negligent in leaving the pool gate open.
Advocates for the Finance Minister, the Reserve Bank and Absa delivered blistering attacks on Public Protector Busisiwe Mkhwebane’s Absa-Bankorp report in the Gauteng High Court (Pretoria) yesterday, raising serious doubt about her motives, notes a Business Day report.
International law firm Pomerantz has announced it is investigating claims that MultiChoice was involved in securities fraud or unlawful business practices relating to payments to Gupta-owned ANN7, according to a TimesLIVE report. Pomerantz said the claims were being investigated on behalf of investors‚ who could contact Robert Willoughby at the firm.
Tired of having their lives on hold for up to six years, college students are being given the pro bono assistance of a law firm to launch a class action against the state for not ensuring they receive their certificates of graduation, according to a City Press report. Keneilwe Molawa, a former student at Motheo technical and vocational education and training college in Bloemfontein, has been trying to get her civil engineering and building construction national vocational certificate since 2010.
The Oppenheimers’ plans to run customs and immigration services at OR Tambo International Airport is on hold for now, pending the outcome of possible appeal proceedings against last month’s Gauteng High Court (Pretoria) judgment in favour of the family, notes a Pretoria News report.