BLOEMFONTIEN: The Constitutional Court has ruled that there are no prospects of success.
African National Congress (ANC) secretary-general Mr Ace Magashule has been dealt a blow in his bid to set aside his suspension from the ruling party.
The Constitutional Court (ConCourt) on Wednesday dismissed Mr Magashule’s application to appeal his suspension, ruling that there were no prospects of success, TimesLIVE reported.
“The Constitutional Court has considered the application for condonation and the application for leave to appeal. It has concluded that though there are no reasonable prospects of success on the merits of the application for leave to appeal, the delay in bringing the application for leave to appeal is minimal, the explanation for the delay is adequate and there is no prejudice to the respondents.
“Consequently, condonation is granted, but leave to appeal must be refused for lack of reasonable prospects of success,” the judgment reads.
Mr Magashule approached the Constitutional Court after the Supreme Court of Appeal (SCA) upheld the Johannesburg High Court’s ruling in his appeal application.
The SCA had dismissed Mr Magashule’s application with costs in January this year.
The ANC secretary-general had appealed the high court’s July 2021 ruling, which found that his suspension was consistent with the ANC’s and the country’s constitution, at the SCA.
While he also wanted the high court to uphold his attempt to suspend Mr Cyril Ramaphosa as ANC president, the full bench did not rule in Mr Magashule’s favour.
Mr Magashule was suspended in May 2021 in line with the ANC’s rule 25.70, which requires all party members criminally charged to step aside pending the conclusion of their cases.
The step-aside rule has since been retained by the ANC following the party’s policy conference last month.
Although he is not allowed to attend organisational activities or represent the ruling party in any activities, Mr Magashule has indicated that he will contest the ANC’s 55th ANC national elective conference in December if nominated.
The ANC secretary-general is facing a string of charges in connection with the 2014 asbestos audit tender.
He previously sought to have the charges against him dropped, but this application was dismissed with costs in March this year. Mr Magashule has maintained he is innocent and claims the charges against him were politically orchestrated.
Alongside Mr Magashule, the accused in the matter include former Mangaung mayor Ms Olly Mlamleli and businessman Mr Edwin Sodi.
The case dates back to 2014 when the Free State human settlements department awarded a contract worth R255 million to Diamond Hill and Blackhead Consulting.
The matter was postponed to 23 September for a pre-trial.