16 May 2008
CRC, CDC functions reviewable – Maseko
Stories by Sabelo Mamba
LAWYER Thulani Maseko said the CRC and CDC being creatures of statute exercised statutory functions as public functionaries are, therefore, reviewable.
Maseko, who was representing political parties and union said a statutory body has to exercise its powers in a manner that does not offend the statutory provisions.
“Where they fail to do so and their actions are subject to the scrutiny by the courts," he submitted.
Maseko said while the constitution-making process may be said to be an inherently political exercise, it did not mean that the CRC and CDC operated and derived their authority outside of the constitutional framework as provided for under the 1973 Proclamation.
“It is submitted that when appointing the CRC and CDC, His Majesty the King was exercising executive constitutional powers he believed were vested in him by the Proclamation,” he said.
“That the CRC and CDC could not have exercised powers as if they had no legal source. It is on this basis that the appellants contend that they misconstrued and misconceived their powers, as alleged.”
He said the CRC and CDC exercised powers conferred to them by the King exercising constitutional powers as the executive.
Maseko added that, therefore, their exercise of such power had to conform to the provisions of the Proclamation being the higher law of the land.
“They are reviewable,” he submitted.
“Any suggestions to the contrary would lead to the erosion of the Rule of Law and thus undermine the effective administration of justice.”
He said the progressives’ claim and relief was based on the contention that the CRC flouted the provisions of the law.