Pretoria – Counsel for the ANC has defended the political party’s cadre deployment and development policy saying it’s unconstitutional to prejudice an employee based on a political party they are affiliated with.
The argument was made on Monday at the North Gauteng High Court in Pretoria, after the DA approached the court to get the ANC policy declared unlawful and unconstitutional.
The counsel further argued that It's impermissible to challenge the deployment policy for its existence because of an appointment of an unskilled candidate.
Video: Oupa Mokoena/African News Agency (ANA)
Instead, he said what should be challenged, is to find fault in the person who had the authority of hiring the person who had no experience.
He also submitted that the ruling party is practising its right to freedom of speech when it indicates who it wants to be appointed to a position in the public service position.
“The ANC is allowed to have their policy under it seeks to have as many people who are affiliated with its principles and ideologies in public administration,’’ he said.
The counsel said the case made by the DA is ill founded and opportunistic political act.
“It is divorced from the facts and would lead to an absurd outcome.”
The second counsel argued that political involvement is warranted in running government, because the ruling party has to ensure that policies derived from its manifesto, are implemented.
He said that the ANC took over an administration which was hostile to its policies, and it made sense for the party to come up with a cadre deployment policy to ensure that their policies are represented.
Earlier, the DA argued that the State and political parties are distinct entities and that political parties should not be able to influence who is appointed to public services.
The opposition party said the ANC’s policy is inconsistent with Sections 195 and Section 197 of the Constitution - which requires the public service to be professional and career-orientated, and free from political interference.
Meanwhile, AfriForum has backed the DA's legal challenge to the ANC’s policy on cadre deployment.
The civil rights organisation has joined the case as friends of the court.
The lobby group said the ANC’s policy is discriminatory as those who support other parties were unlikely to be appointed.
The matter will continue on Tuesday.