Home South African Judge Hlophe’s legal fees cost taxpayer over R10 million

Judge Hlophe’s legal fees cost taxpayer over R10 million

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Minister of Justice and Correctional Services Ronald Lamola says government has paid more than R10 million in legal fees for Judge John Hlophe.

Judge John Hlophe was impeached by Parliament. File picture: Ayanda Ndamane, Independent Newspapers

MINISTER of Justice and Correctional Services Ronald Lamola says government has paid more than R10 million in legal fees for Judge John Hlophe.

Lamola said they were yet to pay R914,000 because they were sorting out the invoices.

Judge Hlophe was impeached by Parliament two weeks ago and the matter was referred to President Cyril Ramaphosa for his approval.

He was impeached along with retired Gauteng Judge Nkola Motata.

Hlophe’s impeachment came after he tried to influence judges of the Constitutional Court in matters involving former president Jacob Zuma.

The Judicial Services Commission (JSC) had referred its findings to Parliament to begin the impeachment process against Hlophe.

The EFF was the only party that voted against the motion to remove Hlophe from office. A majority of more than 305 members of Parliament voted in support of the motion to impeach Hlophe.

Judge Motata was impeached over his drunk driving incident in Johannesburg after he crashed into a boundary wall of a house. He was recorded during the incident.

The JSC had initially slapped him with a fine, but Freedom Under Law appealed in the Supreme Court of Appeal in Bloemfontein.

Lamola said in a written parliamentary reply to a question from Glynnis Breytenbach of the DA that the State has paid more than R10m in legal fees for Hlophe in the last few years.

“The total amount of R10,575,011.63 was paid in respect of Judge President Hlophe’s personal litigation. The amount of R914,400 is still to be paid as there are disputes on invoices being addressed,” said Lamola.

The impeachment of Hlophe and Motata began in Parliament last year after the JSC referred their reports on the two judges to the national legislature.

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