Chief Justice Mogoeng Mogoeng

Chief Justice Mogoeng Mogoeng. Image via: Flickr

NGO: Mogoeng’s apology ‘significant given that he was compelled’

Former Chief Justice Mogoeng Mogoeng recently apologised for expressing pro-Israel comments which received backlash

Chief Justice Mogoeng Mogoeng

Chief Justice Mogoeng Mogoeng. Image via: Flickr

Human Rights organisation Africa4Palestine says it accepts former Chief Justice Mogoeng Mogoeng’s reluctant apology – for expressing pro-Israel comments which placed him at the centre of controversy.

The apology was made just hours before the 10 day deadline set by the Judicial Conduct Committee on Thursday, 3 February 2022. He had previously sworn he would never apologise for his utterances, which were made during a webinar that was hosted by The Jerusalem Post back in 2020, when he was still the head of the Constitutional Court.

Reacting to his apology, Africa4Palestine says it is a victory for Palestinian activists.

“The apology is even more significant given that he was compelled. He was forced, kicking and screaming to the apology table. We see this as a victory over fanaticism and ego. We see this as a victory for the rule of law and an indication of the strength of our judiciary. It is a landmark apology which shows that even the Chief Justice is not above the law. It is a good day for the South African judiciary.”



During the webinar, the former CJ lamented South Africa’s current stance on the Israel-Palestine matter and called for a more balanced approach, to enable greater change in the debate.

“The forgiveness that was demonstrated, the understanding and big heart displayed by President Nelson Mandela and we, the people of South Africa, is an asset we must use around the world to bring peace when there is no peace and to mediate effectively based on rich experience”, he said.

The remark was met with backlash and he was reported to the Judicial Conduct Committee, which found him guilty and ordered him to apologise.

He challenged the ruling with the Judicial Conduct Appeals Committee – which ruled against him – finding that Mogoeng breached the Judicial Code of Conduct by involving himself in matters that caused political controversy.