Gareth Cliff and Advocate Dali Mpofu arrive at the Johannesburg high court. Gareth Cliff is suing M-Net for R25m and wants his job back as an idols judge which he lost when took part in a race debate on Twitter. 260116. Picture: Chris Collingridge 585

Johannesburg - Media personality Gareth Cliff emerged victorious from the South Gauteng High Court on Friday morning with the court ordering broadcast giant M-Net to reinstate him on the Idols SA judging panel.

While delivering her verdict on Friday morning, Judge Caroline Nicholls said that after considering the matter, she found that there was a contract between Cliff and M-Net.

Nicholls said the case was "solely a contractual matter" and was not about racism.

Cliff approached the court last week after he was fired for what M-Net deemed a racial slur after he weighed in on the Penny Sparrow debacle.

Read: Gareth Cliff suing M-Net for R25m

In a Facebook post which sparked social media outrage, Sparrow, a former estate agent, referred to black people as “monkeys”.

Cliff commented on the issue, tweeting that “people really don’t understand free speech at all”.

He has since apologised, saying that his comments were taken the wrong way.

Read: ‘I’ve been an insensitive a**hole’

On Tuesday, M-Net and Cliff slugged it out in court over the latter’s dismissal, with both parties presenting conflicting views regarding the DJ’s termination.

Cliff’s lawyer advocate Dali Mpofu argued that there was a contract between his client and the broadcaster, even though it was oral at the time of his axing and that it was unlawful to terminate it.

Read: ‘Cliff not more racist than other judges’

But M-Net lawyer advocate Wim Trengove SC said that M-Net was within its rights to axe Cliff from the Idols SA judging panel, as the broadcaster felt that he had brought them into disrepute when he was perceived to be a racist.

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The Star