By Lehlohonolo Lehana.
The Economic Freedom Fighter (EFF) is expected to lay a criminal complaint on Wednesday against Public Enterprises Minister Pravin Gordhan.
This after Chief Justice Mogoeng Mogoeng told the Judicial Services Commission on Tuesday that Gordhan had in the past requested a meeting with him to enquire about the performance of KwaZulu-Natal judge Dhaya Pillay during an earlier round of interviews for judges to be appointed to the Constitutional Court (ConCourt).
Mogoeng announced this during the JSE’s grueling interview of Pillay, who faced tough questions from the commission’s panelists about her friendship with Gordhan. Pillay served on the Labour Court and has acted in the Supreme Court of Appeal and recently in the ConCourt.
Mogoeng said his office once received a call from Gordhan seeking an appointment with him.
"I was a bit surprised, we had never met except at the meeting of the heads of the arms of the state where he had to brief us as minister of finance regarding the true state of the fiscus at the time. He came [and] I took a break from the JSE proceedings. I really don’t know what the purpose of the meeting was. I don’t have a clear recollection; I think it was something about the Tax Ombud," Mogoeng said.
"But what stuck in my mind and left me puzzled was the following: He asked me a question [and] said, 'how did my friend [judge] Dhaya Pillay perform?' and we had just caused the spokespersons to announce the results and I told him because it was public knowledge that you [Pillay] did not make it."
Mogoeng said he was reminded of the meeting when the members of the JSE were questioning Pillay about her friendship with Gordhan.
"Why did the honourable minister make an effort to meet me? We are not friends [and] I don’t know him anywhere except from television. Why did he make the trip to seek an audience with me just to ask me ‘how did my friend Dhaya Pillay perform?’ So, it is in that context that the concern regarding your relationship with honourable minister Gordhan arises."
In a statement on Wednesday, the EFF said deputy president Floyd Shivambu would be laying the criminal complaint of corruption against Gordhan at Hillbrow police station.
Pravin Gordhan has breached the— Economic Freedom Fighters (@EFFSouthAfrica) April 14, 2021
Executive Ethics Act 1998, in that he has attempted to unduly influence a sitting Chief Justice, which is against good governance, represents him using his position to improperly benefit another person and failure to act in good faith. pic.twitter.com/je5sP3bRp3