Pretoria - In a victory judgment for the head of what has been described as the apartheid government's chemical and biological warfare project, Dr Wouter Basson, the committee members who presided over his disciplinary hearing, have to recuse themselves.
This was the order of Gauteng High Court, Pretoria Judge Sulet Potterill, who made it clear that Basson did not receive a fair hearing. The judge, in fact, went as far as to refer to the proceedings as “a comedy of errors.”
She found that there was bias on the part of the committee members of the Tribunal Committee that presided over the disciplinary hearing instituted by the Health Professions Council of South Africa (HPCSA).
Basson was in December 2013 found guilty on charges of unprofessional conduct. This related to the time when he headed Project Coast - the controversial chemical and biological warfare project conducted in the 1980’s.
Committee members Professors Jannie Hugo and Eddie Mhlanga, were in the middle of hearing evidence to punish Basson for unprofessional conduct, when drama broke loose.