On Thursday, 14 May 2020, the renegade social justice organisation Liberty Fighters Network (LFN) and its President, Reyno De Beer, lodged an urgent High Court Application challenging the legitimacy of all and any of the Lockdown Regulations which the Minister of Cooperative Governance and Traditional Affairs, Dr. Nkosazana Dlamini Zuma, promulgated since mid-March 2020.
De Beer states in the Founding Affidavit that they are not only bringing the application on behalf of themselves and their members, but also in the interest of justice and in the interest of those South Africans who fell victim to the Lockdown measurements.
So far, all attempts to legally challenge Zuma’s regulations were limited to certain parts only. This is the first time that anyone took on the immense task to challenge the legality of the Lockdown in itself.
LFN’s urgent application has been provisionally enrolled for hearing on Tuesday, 19 May 2020 at the Pretoria High Court before Justice Raulinga. However, the applicants’ attorneys have formally petitioned the Gauteng Division Judge President, R Mlambo, to consider allocating a Full Court of three judges to hear the matter which decision is still awaiting. There, we will provide proof that Zuma’s approach to the pandemic was irrational and that her regulations were entirely unlawful.
The Democratic Alliance (DA) and Freedom Front Plus (FF+) both have announced on Thursday, 14 May 2020, (not knowing about the LFN application) that they would be lodging their applications on Friday, following different lines of argument as that of LFN and only limited to certain parts. However, none of these applications is as far reaching as the LFN one. By the time, DA and FF+ matters will be heard, LFN will either have been victorious or would have already applied for leave to appeal.
We do, however, congratulate both of these political parties to have finally made a U-turn on their commitments they made on 15 March 2020, together with the other 12 parties represented in Parliament, to fully support the COVID-19 measures of the Government and miraculously only now realising that it has gone too far and obviously with the extra treat having their eyes on canvassing voters for the coming Local Elections.
We, however, have informally invited them to join our arguments against Zuma’s Lockdown. Some of our points before court are these:
1) We challenge the constitutionality of all Regulations issued in terms of Section 27(2) of the Disaster Management Act as published in the Government Gazette since 18 March 2020, including all and any amendments.
2) We will show that Zuma used her delegated powers to make regulations which by far exceed the provisions of the Act; meaning: she was not then – nor is she now or in future – entitled to do what she did.
3) Any regulations promulgated under the DMA must comply with the Constitution and must be referred to the National Council of Provinces (NCOP). This process was not followed, rendering the regulations unlawful for that reason alone.
4) We will also say that the declaration of the National State of Disaster was irrational and overall questionable; specifically because Zuma failed to take South Africa’s unique socio-economic conditions into consideration; something of which she is well aware.
5) Specifically, we will state why the prohibition on gatherings is invalid and why the current regulations conflict with legislation enacted by Parliament. In fact, the current regulations effectively prevent any protest against the actions of Government in relation to the declaration of a National State of Disaster. This, we believe, smacks of totalitarianism and is unworthy of our young democracy.
6) We also say that the decision to utilise the DMA to manage the current COVID-19 crisis is unlawful, for a host of reasons. There, in fact, exists a piece of legislation under which the President could have enacted proper regulations which would have been overseen by Parliament and the NCOP but for some obscure reason totally discarded.
7) We allege that the Lockdown Regulations have violated almost all clauses in the Bill of Rights of most of our citizens and that Zuma has especially humiliated and trampled upon the dignity of the vulnerable citizens and guests of South Africa.
Both LFN and its President are represented by the well-known human rights lawyers, Zehir Omar Attorneys, of Springs. We wish to take the opportunity to thank them wholeheartedly not only for their support and effort in preparing this case but for their courage to join us in the fight to defend all the people of our country who fell victim to the Lockdown and to fight for a better future for all South Africans and not only for a few elite.
Zahir Omar has filed a Rule 16A Notice to invite any person or organisation who wants to make any further inputs in this matter to request the parties to be admitted as amicus curiae (friend of the Court).
Reyno De Beer
Here you may download the complete Court process:
Complete Application (189 pages 36MB – 18 sets of less than 2MB each) NOTICE OF MOTION_pages 1 to 10; NOTICE OF MOTION_pages 11 to 20; NOTICE OF MOTION_pages 21 to 30; NOTICE OF MOTION_pages 31 to 40; NOTICE OF MOTION_pages 41 to 50; NOTICE OF MOTION_pages 51 to 60; NOTICE OF MOTION_pages 61 to 70; NOTICE OF MOTION_pages 71 to 80; NOTICE OF MOTION_pages 81 to 90; NOTICE OF MOTION_pages 91 to 100; NOTICE OF MOTION_pages 101 to 110; NOTICE OF MOTION_pages 111 to 120; NOTICE OF MOTION_pages 121 to 130; NOTICE OF MOTION_pages 131 to 140; NOTICE OF MOTION_pages 141 to 150; NOTICE OF MOTION_pages 151 to 160; NOTICE OF MOTION_pages 161 to 170; NOTICE OF MOTION_pages 171 to 180; NOTICE OF MOTION_pages 181 to 189