RDP petitions Chief JusticeBy: SHINOVENE IMMANUEL
THE Rally for Democracy and Progress (RDP) yesterday applied to the Chief Justice to be allowed to sue the judges who heard the appeal on the legal challenge to the 2009 National Assembly election. The RDP, which is one of the nine political parties that challenged the legality of the conduct and outcome of the 2009 National Assembly election, now wants to sue the five judges who heard the Supreme Court appeal on the parties’ election challenge, to compel the judges to hand down their judgement on the appeal, The Namibian has learnt.
The Supreme Court Act requires that the Chief Justice must give his consent for the institution of civil legal action against any judge of the Supreme Court. If the legal action is directed at the Chief Justice himself, the next available senior judge of the Supreme Court must give consent before such legal action may be launched.
Chief Justice Peter Shivute, and also both of the court’s two permanent judges, Appeal Judges Gerhard Maritz and Sylvester Mainga were part of the five-judge bench that heard the opposition parties’ appeal from October 3 to 5 last year.
The court’s judgement has been awaited since then.
A highly placed source confirmed yesterday that the RDP had made its application for consent to sue the judges of the court.
“Everything is done. We want to sue them, one by one,” said the source close to events, adding that “we gave them five days to respond”.
Asked to confirm their latest move, the RDP’s secretary for international affairs, Libolly Haufiku, said he was instructed by their legal representatives not to comment on anything yet.
The opposition parties have run out of patience with the Supreme Court over the continued delay in the delivery of the court’s decision.
The party recently staged a protest in front of the Supreme Court, demanding the release of the court’s judgement.
The parties’ application to have the National Assembly election of November 27 and 2009 declared invalid, or to have the election results declared null and void and have votes cast in the election recounted, was dismissed in the High Court on February 14 last year.