20 October 2009

Pardons Drama Continues: SAHA involved in further litigation in the Constitutional Court

SAHA will be acting as the Fifth Respondent in the case of Albutt v the Centre for the Study of Violence and Reconciliation and Others, CCT 54/09. The Constitutional Court has set down the case, which is a direct access application to have a previous judgment ordered by the North Gauteng High Court overturned, for hearing on 10 November 2009.

The case concerns the attempt by a former AWB member, Mr Ryan Albutt, to appeal an interim interdict gained by SAHA; the Centre for the Study of Violence and Reconciliation; Khulumani Support Group; the International Centre for Transitional Justice; the Institute for Justice and Reconciliation; the Human Rights Media Centre and the Freedom of Expression Institute. This interdict prohibited the President from granting any further presidential pardons until such time as victims of the crimes had been properly consulted.

Mr Albutt is one of the former AWB members, and other right wing organisation members, who have been recommended by the Pardons Reference Group to be liable for a presidential pardon. Attached to Mr Albutt's court papers was a list of all the pardon applicants which had been distributed only to such applicants, even though the information had been refused to the victims of their crimes. This came in spite of the fact that Judge Sereti had expressly included in the High Court order that that list be made available to the coalition applicants.