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May 2017

Dear South African Law Reports and Criminal Law Reports subscriber

Herewith the cases in the May law reports.

•    Click on the case name to download the original judgment.

JUDGMENTS OF INTEREST IN THE MAY EDITIONS OF THE SALR, SACR AND THE NAMIBIAN LAW REPORTS 2017 (1)

 

SOUTH AFRICAN LAW REPORTS

Evidence under duress

A suspected criminal was given the option of making a statement regarding allegations of theft. He was told that refusal or lies would result in full criminal prosecution and adverse publicity. He elected to confess and the evidence was found to be admissible. Hohne v Super Stone Mining (Pty) Ltd 2017 (3) SA 45 (SCA)

Assisted suicide

The court surveys South African and foreign law on euthanasia and assisted suicide to decide the legality of a doctor administering or prescribing a lethal agent to end the life of a patient suffering from terminal illness. Minister of Justice and Others v Estate Stransham-Ford 2017 (3) SA 152 (SCA)

The International Criminal Court

When South Africa withdrew from the Rome statute, the notice of withdrawal was procedurally irrational, because of the lack of prior consultation with Parliament, and also because of the unexplained haste apparent in the national executive’s conduct in seeking approval consequent to lodging the notice of withdrawal, rather than allowing normal legislative processes to take their course. Parliament, having the power to determine whether an international agreement bound South Africa, must also retain the power to decide whether South Africa remained bound by it. Prior parliamentary approval was required and ex post facto approval could not cure the invalidity. Democratic Alliance v Minister of International Relations and Cooperation and Others  2017 (3) SA 212 (GP)

 

SOUTH AFRICAN CRIMINAL LAW REPORTS

Spousal abuse and sentencing

In the case of rape of a partner in a situation of spousal abuse, the complainant did not wish to pursue prosecution. This did not amount to mitigation justifying a sentence less than the prescribed minimum sentence. It should rather be considered an aggravating factor. S v Amerika 2017 (1) SACR 532 (WCC)

Child offenders

The sixteen-year-old appellant embarked on a shooting spree in a tavern to which he had been refused entry. He was convicted of murder, two counts of attempted murder and firearm offences. The sentence of 19 years’ imprisonment was found on appeal to leave him with little hope of a different life outside of crime. The sentence was reduced to 13 years.  S v Bruintjies 2017 (1) SACR 553 (WCC)

Confession by rough handling

Confessions and pointings-out made after some slapping and rough handling by the police, which amounted to assault but not torture, were properly admitted. The trial judge had been aware of the accused’s constitutional rights and the evidence had been examined in detail. S v Bakane and Others 2017 (1) SACR 576 (GP)

 

NAMIBIAN LAW REPORTS

Objection to renaming of streets

A local authority conferred honours on meritorious persons by renaming streets. This was within its discretionary powers and the decision was one of policy and not an administrative one. Policy decision implementation did not require further notice to the public before renaming the streets. Vaatz v Municipal Council of the Municipality of Windhoek 2017 (1) NR 32 (SC)

Access to communal land

All communal land vested in the state. Such land was not capable of freehold ownership. Fencing off of communal land was therefore prohibited, unless prior approval had been obtained. The respondents were ordered to remove fencing that restricted the applicant’s access to grazing, water and wood. Naango and Others v Kalekela and Others 2017 (1) NR 66 (HC)

Uniformity in sentencing

The principle of individualisation of sentences has to be balanced against uniformity. Similarity of crimes and circumstances require the imposition of uniform sentences. On review, the court looks at why one of the accused, who was also a first offender, received a harsher punishment than the three other first offenders. S v Vos and Others 2017 (1) NR 106 (HC)

 

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 SOUTH AFRICAN LAW REPORTS
 TABLE OF CASES
 
  • The Asphalt Venture 2017 (3) SA 1 (SCA)
  • Basson and Others v Hanna 2017 (3) SA 22 (SCA)
  • Commissioner, South African Revenue Service v Van der Merwe NO and Others 2017 (3) SA 34 (SCA)
  • Hohne v Super Stone Mining (Pty) Ltd 2017 (3) SA 45 (SCA)
  • Louw NO v Kock and Another 2017 (3) SA 62 (WCC)
  • Thembani v Swanepoel 2017 (3) SA 70 (ECM)
  • Tyre Corporation Cape Town (Pty) Ltd and Others v GT Logistics (Pty) Ltd (Esterhuizen and Another Intervening) 2017 (3) SA 74 (WCC)
  • Minister of Justice and Another v SA Restructuring and Insolvency Practitioners Association and Others 2017 (3) SA 95 (SCA)
  • Nkabinde and Another v Judicial Service Commission and Others 2017 (3) SA 119 (CC)
  • Airports Company South Africa Ltd v Airport Bookshops (Pty) Ltd t/a Exclusive Books 2017 (3) SA 128 (SCA)
  • Argent Industrial Investment (Pty) Ltd v Ekurhuleni Metropolitan Municipality 2017 (3) SA 146 (GJ)
  • Minister of Justice and Others v Estate Stransham-Ford 2017 (3) SA 152 (SCA)
  • Kaimowitz v Delahunt and Others 2017 (3) SA 201 (WCC)
  • Democratic Alliance v Minister of International Relations and Cooperation and Others 2017 (3) SA 212 (GP)
  • AMCU and Others v Chamber of Mines of South Africa and Others 2017 (3) SA 242 (CC)
  • Du Plooy NO and Others v De Hollandsche Molen Share Block Ltd and Another 2017 (3) SA 274 (WCC)
  • Okoroafor v Minister of Home Affairs and Another 2017 (3) SA 290 (ECP)
  • Aquila Steel (SA) Ltd v Minister of Mineral Resources and Others 2017 (3) SA 301 (GP)
 
 FLYNOTES
 

THE ASPHALT VENTURE 
WINDRUSH INTERCONTINENTAL SA AND ANOTHER v UACC BERGSHAV TANKERS AS (SCA)

MAYA DP, SHONGWE JA, WALLIS JA, DAMBUZA JA and MAKGOKA AJA
2016 SEPTEMBER 8; DECEMBER 6
[2016] ZASCA 199

Shipping - Ship—Crew—Wages—Protection of wages of crew held hostage by pirates—Sailor’s lien for wages as basis for action in rem—Crew held hostage ashore and unable to render service to ship—Fixed-term contracts expired—No provision for continued payment of wages pending repatriation—Impossibility of performance—No lien and no action in rem.

Shipping - Admiralty law—Maritime lien—Sailor’s lien for wages—Lien for wages for crew captured and abducted by pirates—Crew held hostage ashore and unable to render service to ship—Fixed-term contracts expired—No provision for continued payment of wages pending repatriation—Impossibility of performance—No lien and no action in rem.

Shipping - Breach—Remedies—Specific performance—Damages in lieu of specific performance—Where subject-matter of contract having been alienated making performance impossible—Claim for damages in lieu of specific performance competent in circumstances.

BASSON AND OTHERS v HANNA (SCA)

SHONGWE JA, WILLIS JA, ZONDI JA, DAMBUZA JA and MATHOPO JA
2016 NOVEMBER 18; DECEMBER 6
[2016] ZASCA 198

Contract- Consensus—No consensus on applicable rate of interest—Not rendering agreement null and void—Rate of interest applicable being that prescribed from time to time by notice in Gazette in terms of Prescribed Rate of Interest Act 55 of 1975.

Contract- Consensus—No consensus on applicable rate of interest—Not rendering agreement null and void—Rate of interest applicable being that prescribed from time to time by notice in Gazette in terms of Prescribed Rate of Interest Act 55 of 1975.

COMMISSIONER, SOUTH AFRICAN REVENUE SERVICE v VAN DER MERWE NO AND OTHERS (SCA)

LEWIS JA, THERON JA, WALLIS JA, PETSE JA and DAMBUZA JA
2016 AUGUST 21; SEPTEMBER 29
[2016] ZASCA 138

Insolvency - Property passing to trustee—Imported goods in respect of which value-added tax and duties unpaid—Trustee entitled to demand delivery of imported goods under Commissioner’s custody and control despite non-payment—Customs and Excise Act 91 of 1964 not creating embargo in favour of Commissioner that unless VAT and duties were paid, trustees prevented from taking possession of imported goods—Insolvency Act 24 of 1936, s 47.

Revenue - Customs and excise—Customs duty and VAT—Non-payment of by company in liquidation—Trustee entitled to demand delivery of imported goods under Commissioner’s custody and control despite non-payment—Customs and Excise Act 91 of 1964 not creating embargo in favour of Commissioner that unless VAT and duties were paid, trustees prevented from taking possession of imported goods—Insolvency Act 24 of 1936, s 47.

HOHNE v SUPER STONE MINING (PTY) LTD (SCA)

SHONGWE JA, LEACH JA, PETSE JA, WILLIS JA and NICHOLLS AJA
2016 NOVEMBER 4, 30
[2016] ZASCA 186

Evidence - Admissibility—Duress—Admissibility, in delictual claim, of evidence obtained by threat of criminal prosecution—Suspected criminal given choice to make statement regarding allegations of theft—Told that refusal or lies would result in full criminal prosecution and adverse publicity—Electing to confess—Admitting quantum—Not contra bonos mores—Evidence admissible—Claim enforceable.

LOUW NO v KOCK AND ANOTHER (WCC)

MEER J
2016 OCTOBER 31

Will - Divorce—Effect—Husband dying less than three months after divorce—Section providing that will to be implemented as if wife had died before divorce—This unless it appeared from will that intention to benefit her notwithstanding divorce—Whether such intention appearing from will—Wills Act 7 of 1953, s 2B.

THEMBANI v SWANEPOEL (ECM)

MAJIKI J and BROOKS J
2016 SEPTEMBER 12

Equality legislation - Hate speech—Burden and standard of proof—Objective approach to intention—Promotion of Equality and Prevention of Unfair Discrimination Act 4 of 2000, s 10(1).

TYRE CORPORATION CAPE TOWN (PTY) LTD AND OTHERS v GT LOGISTICS (PTY) LTD (ESTERHUIZEN AND ANOTHER INTERVENING) (WCC)

ROGERS J
2016 SEPTEMBER 16, 21

Company - Business rescue—Availability—Commercial or factual insolvency no bar to business rescue—Constituting ‘financial distress’ for purposes of Act—Companies Act 71 of 2008, ss 128(1) (f) and 131(4) (a).

MINISTER OF JUSTICE AND ANOTHER v SA RESTRUCTURING AND INSOLVENCY PRACTITIONERS ASSOCIATION AND OTHERS (SCA)

MPATI P, WALLIS JA, SWAIN JA, MATHOPO JA and VAN DER MERWE JA
2016 SEPTEMBER 13; DECEMBER 2
[2016] ZASCA 196

Labour law - Employment equity—Affirmative action—Constitutionality—Affirmative action policy for appointment of insolvency trustees and company liquidators—Inflexible race- and gender-based regime imposed—Policy unconstitutional for being arbitrary, capricious and incapable of practical application—Also no rational connection between policy and stated objectives—Declared invalid—Constitution, s 9(2).

Insolvency - Trustee—Appointment—Appointment policy—Affirmative-action policy for appointment of trustees—Strict racial and gender allocation—Policy unconstitutional—Constitution, s 9(2).

NKABINDE AND ANOTHER v JUDICIAL SERVICE COMMISSION AND OTHERS (CC)

MOGOENG CJ, CAMERON J, FRONEMAN J, KHAMPEPE J, MADLANGA J, MBHA AJ, MHLANTLA J, MUSI AJ and ZONDO J
2016 AUGUST 24
[2016] ZACC 25

Constitutional practice - Constitutional Court—Order—Rescission—Refusal of leave to appeal—Decision to refuse leave made at conference of justices on principle that court would not grant leave to appeal where it was incapacitated because its members were disqualified from determining merits of application—Such reasoning applying equally to application for rescission, which court may summarily refuse—So ordered—Constitutional Court Rule 19(6) (b).

AIRPORTS COMPANY SOUTH AFRICA LTD v AIRPORT BOOKSHOPS (PTY) LTD t/a EXCLUSIVE BOOKS (SCA)

LEWIS JA, SHONGWE JA, WILLIS JA, ZONDI JA and POTTERILL AJA
2016 SEPTEMBER 12, 27
[2016] ZASCA 129

Lease - Termination—Lease for undetermined period—Notice of termination—Reasonable notice—What constitutes—Lease must be interpreted to determine whether notice reasonable, having regard to factual matrix and commercial sensibilities—In circumstances of present case, lessor not proving that six weeks’ advance notice of termination of month-to-month lease reasonable.

ARGENT INDUSTRIAL INVESTMENT (PTY) LTD v EKURHULENI METROPOLITAN MUNICIPALITY (GJ)

YACOOB AJ
2016 DECEMBER 6; 2017 FEBRUARY 13

Local authority - Levies and charges—Consumption charges for electricity and water—Prescription of obligation to pay—Where consumer invoiced with difference between estimated consumption paid and actual consumption as per meter reading taken for first time in more than three years—Obligation to pay consumption charges older than three years from date of invoice extinguished by prescription—Prescription Act 68 of 1969, s 12(3).

Prescription - Extinctive prescription—Commencement—Knowledge of debt—Local-authority consumption charges for electricity and water—Where consumer invoiced with difference between estimated consumption paid and actual consumption as per meter reading taken for first time in more than three years—Whether consumption charges older than three years from date of invoice extinguished by prescription—Prescription Act 68 of 1969, s 12(3).

 

MINISTER OF JUSTICE AND OTHERS v ESTATE STRANSHAM-FORD (SCA)

LEWIS JA, SERITI JA, WALLIS JA, DAMBUZA JA and SCHIPPERS AJA
2016 DECEMBER 6
[2016] ZASCA 197

Medicine - Euthanasia—Assisted suicide—High Court order that doctor could administer or prescribe lethal agent to end terminally ill man’s life—Order set aside.

Medicine - Euthanasia—Assisted suicide—Legality of physician administered euthanasia and physician assisted suicide—Survey of South African and foreign law.

KAIMOWITZ v DELAHUNT AND OTHERS (WCC)

DAVIS J
2016 OCTOBER 24; NOVEMBER 23

Company - Directors and officers—Director—Powers and duties—To participate in day-to-day management of company—Director not as of right entitled to do so—Companies Act 71 of 2008, s 66(1).

DEMOCRATIC ALLIANCE v MINISTER OF INTERNATIONAL RELATIONS AND COOPERATION AND OTHERS (GP)

MOJAPELO DJP, MAKGOKA J and MOTHLE J
2016 DECEMBER 5, 6; 2017 FEBRUARY 22

International law - International criminal law—International Criminal Court—Withdrawal from Rome Statute—Requirements—Whether parliamentary approval required prior to delivery of notice of withdrawal by national executive to United Nations—Parliament, having power to determine whether international agreement bound South Africa, must also retain power to decide whether South Africa remained bound by it—Prior parliamentary approval required—Ex post facto approval not curing invalidity—Constitution, s 231.

International law - International agreements, treaties and conventions—Withdrawal from—Whether national executive’s power to conclude international treaties includes power to give notice of withdrawal from them without prior parliamentary approval—Constitution, s 231.

AMCU AND OTHERS v CHAMBER OF MINES OF SOUTH AFRICA AND OTHERS (CC)

NKABINDE ACJ, CAMERON J, FRONEMAN J, JAFTA J, MADLANGA J, MBHA AJ, MHLANTLA J and ZONDO J
2016 NOVEMBER 24; 2017 FEBRUARY 2
[2017] ZACC 3

Labour law - Collective agreement—Extension to non-parties—Limitation of right to strike—Constitutionality—Application of majoritarian principle—Meaning of ‘workplace’—Labour Relations Act 66 of 1995, s 23(1) (d) (iii).

Constitutional law - Human rights—Right to strike—Right of employer and majority unions to extend collective agreement to non-parties—Whether limitation of right to strike justified—Application of majoritarian principle—Meaning of ‘workplace’—Labour Relations Act 66 of 1995, s 23(1)(d)(iii).

DU PLOOY NO AND OTHERS v DE HOLLANDSCHE MOLEN SHARE BLOCK LTD AND ANOTHER (WCC)

DAVIS J
2015 NOVEMBER 11

Company - Formation and constitution—Subscribers—Whether, without more, becoming members on company’s incorporation—Whether, without taking up their subscribed-for shares, able to transfer their rights therein to third parties—Companies Act 61 of 1973, s 103(1).

OKOROAFOR v MINISTER OF HOME AFFAIRS AND ANOTHER (ECP)

EKSTEEN J
2016 OCTOBER 18

Immigration - Refugee—Qualification for status—Exclusion—Individuals who have ‘committed a crime’—Scope of ‘crime’—Who may decide ‘there is reason to believe’ individual has committed crime—Refugees Act 130 of 1998, s 4(1) (b).

AQUILA STEEL (SA) LTD v MINISTER OF MINERAL RESOURCES AND OTHERS (GP)

TUCHTEN J
2016 NOVEMBER 22

Administrative law - Administrative action—Review—Remedies—Substitution of decision—Decision of Minister of Mineral Affairs to dismiss application for mining rights—Inordinate administrative delays and no proper reasons given for decision—Fair, just and equitable to substitute minister’s decision with court’s decision granting application—Promotion of Administrative Justice Act 3 of 2000, s 8(1)(c)(ii)(aa).

Minerals and petroleum - Mining and prospecting rights—Applications—Acceptance—Nature of MPRDA’s queuing system—Non-acceptance amounting to rejection—Applicant losing place in queue upon nonacceptance and return of non-compliant application—Mineral and Petroleum Resources Development Act 28 of 2002, s 16.

Minerals and petroleum - Mining and prospecting rights—Lapsing of upon deregistration of rights-holder company—Revival upon subsequent restoration of company’s registration—Company not revested with prospecting right which lapsed due to effluxion of period such rights were granted for—Mineral and Petroleum Resources Development Act 28 of 2002, s 56(c); Companies Act 61 of 1973, s 73(6A).

Minerals and petroleum - Mining and prospecting rights—Transition to new order under MPRDA—Duration of old order rights-holder’s preferent right to apply for prospecting and mining rights—Effect of such right on other applications—Whether such exclusive right survived until application was either granted or refused—Mineral and Petroleum Resources Development Act 28 of 2002, sch II, item 8.

 

 SOUTH AFRICAN CRIMINAL LAW REPORTS
 TABLE OF CASES
 
  • S v Joubert 2017 (1) SACR 497 (SCA)
  • S v Setshedi 2017 (1) SACR 504 (GP)
  • S v Smith 2017 (1) SACR 520 (WCC)
  • S v Amerika 2017 (1) SACR 532 (WCC)
  • S v Setlholo 2017 (1) SACR 544 (NCK)
  • S v Bruintjies 2017 (1) SACR 553 (WCC)
  • S v Maringa 2017 (1) SACR 561 (NCK)
  • S v Rasena 2017 (1) SACR 565 (ECG)
  • S v Masango 2017 (1) SACR 571 (GP)
  • S v Bakane and Others 2017 (1) SACR 576 (GP)

 

 FLYNOTES
 

S v JOUBERT (SCA)

SHONGWE JA, MAJIEDT JA, VAN DER MERWE JA, MOCUMIE JA and SCHIPPERS AJA
2017 FEBRUARY 16; MARCH 3
[2017] ZASCA 3

Appeal - Against sentence—Powers of court on appeal—Increase of sentence—Court erroneously granting appellant leave to appeal against both conviction and sentence when appellant only sought such against conviction—State, without cross-appealing, seeking increase of sentence on appeal—Court increasing sentence without giving notification to appellant of its intention to do so—Substantial miscarriage of justice occurring—Increased sentence set aside.

S v SETSHEDI (GP)

PRINSLOO J, LOUW J and MOTHLE J
2016 NOVEMBER 11; DECEMBER 14

Sentence - Prescribed minimum sentences—Imposition of in terms of Criminal Law Amendment Act 105 of 1997—Charge-sheet not reflecting applicability of Act—Effect of on sentence on appeal set out. 

S v SMITH (WCC)

ROGERS J and PARKER AJ
2016 NOVEMBER 18; 2017 JANUARY 26

Sentence - Conspiracy—Prescribed sentence for principal offence not starting point for assessing appropriate sentence for conspiracy to commit offence.

Sentence - Factors to be taken into account—Remorse—Expression of remorse not essential requirement for court to exercise mercy.

Murder - Conspiracy to commit murder—Sentence—Appellant convicted of conspiracy to murder his business partner—Appellant’s co-conspirator, his ex-girlfriend, having been sentenced in plea-and-sentence agreement with state to wholly suspended sentence for same offence—In appellant’s appeal, court holding that latter sentence inappropriately lenient and imposing sentence of seven years’ imprisonment of which three years suspended.

S v AMERIKA (WCC)

HENNEY J
2016 DECEMBER 13

Rape - Sentence—Rape of partner in situation of spousal abuse—Fact that complainant did not wish to pursue prosecution not constituting substantive and compelling circumstance or mitigation justifying sentence less than prescribed minimum sentence—Should be considered aggravating factor.

S v SETLHOLO (NCK)

TLALETSI J and PHATSHOANE J
2016 DECEMBER 13; 2017 MARCH 3

Corruption - Sentence—Police officer soliciting bribe from person who had been lured into fake illicit diamond transaction—Fact that perpetrator a police officer an aggravating factor—Sentence of 10 years’ imprisonment confirmed on appeal.

S v BRUINTJIES (WCC)

SALDANHA J, CLOETE J and SAVAGE J
2017 FEBRUARY 17, 23

Child - Sentence—Imprisonment—Long-term imprisonment—Whether appropriate—Sixteen-year-old appellant embarked on shooting spree in tavern to which he had been refused entry—Convicted of murder, two counts of attempted murder and firearm offences—Appellant 18 years old at time of sentencing and sentenced to 19 years’ imprisonment—Such lengthy sentence not leaving appellant with much hope of different life outside of crime—Sentence reduced to 13 years’ imprisonment.

S v MARINGA (NCK)

MATLAPENG AJ
2016 OCTOBER 28; 2017 FEBRUARY 10

Appeal - Special entry in terms of s 317(2) of Criminal Procedure Act 51 of 1977—Prisoner discovering many years after conviction that defended by attorney without right of appearance—Requirements of s 317 met and condonation granted for lateness of application.

S v RASENA (ECG)

PICKERING J and MBENENGE J
2016 SEPTEMBER 13

Arms and ammunition - Declaration of unfitness to possess firearm in terms of s 103(2)(a) of Firearms Control Act 60 of 2000—Enquiry—Nature of—Enquiry performed in perfunctory fashion—Consideration of all relevant factors required for proper enquiry.

S v MASANGO (GP)

MAVUNDLA J, PHATUDI J and PRETORIUS J
2015 OCTOBER 8

Sentence - Evidence on sentence—Insufficient evidence placed before court—Duties of court in terms of s 274(1) of Criminal Procedure Act 51 of 1977.

S v BAKANE AND OTHERS (GP)

PRELLER J, KUMALO J and MANAMELA AJ
2014 NOVEMBER 10; 2015 OCTOBER 30

Evidence - Confession—Admissibility—Undue influence—Slapping and rough handling by police amounting to assault but not torture—No automatic exclusion—Trial judge aware of accused’s constitutional rights and evidence examined in detail—Confessions and pointings-out properly admitted.

 

 THE NAMIBIAN LAW REPORTS 2017 (1)
 TABLE OF CASES
   
  • Chairperson of the Tender Board of Namibia v Pamo Trading Enterprises CC and Another 2017 (1) NR 1 (SC)
  • De Beers Marine Namibia (Pty) Ltd v Loubser 2017 (1) NR 20 (SC)
  • Vaatz v Municipal Council of the Municipality of Windhoek 2017 (1) NR 32 (SC)
  • Leopard Tours Car and Camping Hire CC and Others v Dannecker 2017 (1) NR 50 (HC)
  • Uvanga v Steenkamp and Others 2017 (1) NR 59 (HC)
  • Naango and Others v Kalekela and Others 2017 (1) NR 66 (HC)
  • Gaya v Rittmann NO and Others 2017 (1) NR 80 (HC)
  • Imbili v Nepela and Another 2017 (1) NR 96 (HC)
  • S v Vos and Others 2017 (1) NR 106 (HC)
  • AP v EP and Others 2017 (1) NR 109 (HC)
  • S v Kharuchab 2017 (1) NR 116 (HC)
  • Standard Bank Namibia Ltd v Gaseb and Another 2017 (1) NR 121 (LC)
  • Viljoen v Chairperson of the Immigration Selection Board and Another 2017 (1) NR 132 (HC)
  • Four Three Five Development Companies (Pty) Ltd v Namibia Airports Company and Others 2017 (1) NR 142 (HC)
  • S v Pienaar 2017 (1) NR 149 (SC)
  • Jackson v Shuudifonya 2017 (1) NR 155 (NLD)
  • Jurgens v Geixob and Others 2017 (1) NR 160 (LC)
  • Prosecutor-General v Paulo and Another 2017 (1) NR 178 (HC)
  • Du Toit v Dreyer and Others 2017 (1) NR 190 (SC)
  • S v Eigowas 2017 (1) NR 207 (NLD)
  • S v Shilamba 2017 (1) NR 211 (NLD)
  • Prosecutor-General and Others v Mwananyambe and 19 Other Cases 2017 (1) NR 215 (HC)
  • Prosecutor-General v Kennedy 2017 (1) NR 228 (HC)
  • Somaeb v Standard Bank Namibia Ltd 2017 (1) NR 248 (SC)
  • Goike v Von Zelewski and Others 2017 (1) NR 260 (HC)
  • Mahupelo v Minister of Safety and Security and Others 2017 (1) NR 275 (HC)

 

 FLYNOTES
 

CHAIRPERSON OF THE TENDER BOARD OF NAMIBIA v PAMO TRADING ENTERPRISES CC AND ANOTHER (SC)

SMUTS JA, CHOMBA AJA and MOKGORO AJA
2016 OCTOBER 14; NOVEMBER 16

Administrative law - Access to information—Access to information held by public body—Right to fair and reasonable administrative action under art 18 of Constitution did not include right of access to information—Delineation of parameters of right of access to information matter for legislator and not courts—Respondents’ reliance on arts 12 and 18 sketchy and unsupported. 

Practice - Discovery and inspection—Pre-litigation discovery—Development of common law to provide for pre-litigation discovery—Pre-litigation discovery rare exception under common law and would not be permitted as a ‘fishing expedition’—Respondents had adequate alternative remedies of obtaining early discovery—Appeal upheld.

DE BEERS MARINE NAMIBIA (PTY) LTD v LOUBSER (SC)

MAINGA JA, HOFF JA and MOKGORO AJA
2016 JULY 6; NOVEMBER 29

Practice - Judgments and orders—Grounds of appeal against reasons—Appeal lay against judgment or order not reasons advanced.

Practice - Pauper suits—Litigant seeking to continue action in forma pauperis—Respondent not qualifying and not applying for leave to sue in forma pauperis in terms of rule 41 of High Court Rules—Condonation—Inherent power of court—Justice of case merited exercise of inherent power of court granting leave to continue action in forma pauperis—Appeal dismissed.

VAATZ v MUNICIPAL COUNCIL OF THE MUNICIPALITY OF WINDHOEK (SC)

MARITZ JA, MAINGA JA and MTAMBANENGWE AJA
2013 JUNE 21; 2016 SEPTEMBER 30

Local authority - Powers and duties—Renaming of streets—Local authority power of conferring honours on meritorious persons—Renaming streets within discretionary powers of local authority—Policy for renaming streets previously adopted—Decision to rename streets policy decision and not administrative—Policy decision implementation did not require further notice to public before renaming streets—Appeal dismissed—Local Authorities Act 23 of 1992, s 30(1)(q).

LEOPARD TOURS CAR AND CAMPING HIRE CC AND OTHERS v DANNECKER (HC)

VAN WYK AJ
2016 JULY 25; SEPTEMBER 9
[2016] NAHCMD 260

Practice - Trial—Absolution from the instance at close of plaintiff’s case—Absolution refused with costs—Nature of proceedings—Not definitive of rights of parties, not disposing of substantial portion of relief sought and not giving finality to dispute—Proceedings interlocutory in nature as contemplated by High Court Rule 32(11)—Costs limited to N$20 000—Warrant of execution set aside.

UVANGA v STEENKAMP AND OTHERS (HC)

MASUKU J
2016 DECEMBER 2
[2016] NAHCMD 378

Practice - Pleadings—Special plea of locus standi—Different procedures prescribed for adjudication of special pleas and interlocutory proceedings—Special pleas were peremptory, not interlocutory and preparatory as contemplated by rule 32(11) of the High Court Rules—Special pleas could be dispositive of whole case—Application of rule 32(11) by taxing master erroneous and set aside.

Costs - Bill of costs—Taxing master—Review of taxing master’s stated case in terms of rule 75(1) of High Court Rules—Duty of preparing stated case for court’s review—Taxing master must not become litigious.

NAANGO AND OTHERS v KALEKELA AND OTHERS (HC)

UEITELE J
2015 SEPTEMBER 1; 2016 DECEMBER 6
[2016] NAHCMD 383

Interdict - Final interdict—Requisite for—Injury actually committed or reasonably apprehended—Unnecessary to prove eviction would or had occurred—Reasonable apprehension that respondents might interfere with rights sufficient.

Interdict - Communal land—All communal land vested in state—Land not capable of freehold ownership—Fencing off of communal land prohibited unless prior approval had been obtained—Purported ownership conferred uponrespondents ofafarming area invalidandfencing off illegal—Respondents ordered to remove fence—Communal Land Reform Act 5 of 2002, ss 17 and 18(a).

GAYA v RITTMANN NO AND OTHERS (HC)

ANGULA AJ
2016 NOVEMBER 1; DECEMBER 12
[2016] NAHCMD 388

Administrative law - Fair administrative justice—Article 18 of Constitution—Master of High Court administrative official performing judicial functions subject to art 18 of Constitution—Duty of acting fairly and reasonably—Failure to provide reasons and record of decision contrary to art 18 of Constitution—Abdication of duties of administering deceased estates—Unsubstantiated decision akin to no decision—Master’s decision reviewed and set aside.

IMBILI v NEPELA AND ANOTHER (HC)

OOSTHUIZEN J
2016 AUGUST 5; NOVEMBER 10
[2016] NAHCMD 340

Practice - Judgments and orders—Rescission—Irregular procedures adopted when judgment entered—Order granted in error in absence of party affected thereby—Failure to follow prescribed procedures of High Court Rules 26(4), 26(5) and 27(1)—Not necessary to show good cause for rescission of judgment in terms of rule 103(1)(a)—Irregularities appeared from court file and record—Court mero motu, upon notice to parties, rescinded judgment and reinstated applicant’s defence.

S v VOS AND OTHERS (HC)

LIEBENBERG J and SHIVUTE J
2017 JANUARY 30
[2017] NAHCMD 15

Criminal procedure - Sentence—Consistency—Principle of individualisation to be balanced against uniformity—Similarity of crimes and circumstances requiring imposition of uniform sentence—Principle disregarded by court a quo.

AP v EP AND OTHERS (HC)

UNENGU AJ
2016 NOVEMBER 10; 2017 JANUARY 18
[2017] NAHCMD 2

Partnership - Universal partnership—Marriage out of community of property—Tacit universal partnership agreement—Whether antenuptial contract precluding conclusion of such agreement—Antenuptial contract not excluding conclusion of universal partnership agreement in respect of commercial ventures—Plaintiff failing to establish whether partnership relied upon was in respect of commercial ventures only or societas universorum bonorum which was prohibited where marriages were contracted out of community of property.

S v KHARUCHAB (HC)

NDAUENDAPO J and SHIVUTE J
2017 JANUARY 20
[2017] NAHCMD 5

Criminal procedure - Convictions—Duplication—What constitutes—Two separate acts committed—One criminal transaction—Single intent of escaping from custody—Duplication of charges—Conviction and sentence on fraud charge set aside.

STANDARD BANK NAMIBIA LTD v GASEB AND ANOTHER (LC)

VAN WYK AJ
2016 JULY 22; 2017 JANUARY 27
[2017] NALCMD 1

Labour court - Appeal—Against arbitrator’s award—Right restricted to questions of law only—Court required to determine as question of law whether evidence such that no reasonable arbitrator could make such finding or whether evidence could not reasonably support finding—Labour Act 11 of 2007, s 89(1).

Labour law - Disciplinary sanctions—Consistency in—Part of law of Namibia—Like discipline for like misconduct—Justification and valid reasons for differentiation in disciplinary sanctions required.

VILJOEN v CHAIRPERSON OF THE IMMIGRATION SELECTION BOARD AND ANOTHER (HC)

PARKER AJ
2016 NOVEMBER 9; 2017 JANUARY 26
[2017] NAHCMD 13

Administrative law - Review—Misinterpretation of statute—Reviewable error in law—Misinterpretation resulted in administrative body not complying with statutory requirements of Immigration Control Act 7 of 1993, in violation of art 18 of Constitution—Board’s decision unlawful and invalid.

Administrative law - Administrative action—Review—Duty to exhaust internal remedies—Unlawfulness of board’s decision gravely material—Effect of undermining domestic remedies—Impugned decision set aside—Court exercising discretion to order respondents to issue permit within fixed period of time.

FOUR THREE FIVE DEVELOPMENT COMPANIES (PTY) LTD v NAMIBIA AIRPORTS COMPANY AND OTHERS (HC)

PARKER AJ
2016 SEPTEMBER 20; OCTOBER 20, 31; 2017 FEBRUARY 2
[2017] NAHCMD 23

Review - Generally—Review grounds for administrative decisions to be founded on common-law and constitutional grounds—Heaping vituperations and calumnies on administrative body and making allegations of moral turpitude serving no purpose—Such conduct prejudicial to judicial process.

Administrative law - Review—Exhaustion of internal or domestic remedies before approaching courts—Legislative remedies provided immediate, cost effective, sufficient, practical relief and effective redress in respect of complaint in question—Airports Company Act 25 of 1998, s 12.

S v PIENAAR (SC)

SHIVUTE CJ, MAINGA JA and CHOMBA AJA
2016 OCTOBER 2; 2017 FEBRUARY 13

Criminal procedure - Bail—Leave to appeal against court a quo’s refusal to grant bail—When to be granted—Court a quo finding no prospects of success on appeal—Leave to appeal granted based on irregularity in proceeding in court a quo—Court should have refused leave where prospects of success absent—Interests of justice militated against granting of bail—Appeal dismissed—Criminal Procedure Act 51 of 1977, s 61.

JACKSON v SHUUDIFONYA (NLD)

CHEDA J
2016 APRIL 25; JULY 18; SEPTEMBER 23; OCTOBER 7
[2016] NAHCNLD 83

Practice - Judgments and orders—Rescission—Default judgment applied for and granted by citing rule 31(2) instead of rule 15 of High Court Rules—Wrong rule cited—Judgment erroneously sought and granted—Judgment rescinded.

JURGENS v GEIXOB AND OTHERS (LC)

NARIB AJ
2016 SEPTEMBER 16, 28; 2017 JANUARY 27
[2017] NALCMD 2

Labour law - Dismissal—Unfair dismissal—Employer has onus of establishing both valid and fair reason for dismissal and that fair procedure had been followed—Employer conceding dismissal procedurally unfair—Finding of unfair dismissal unassailable—Labour Act 11 of 2007, s 33(1).

Labour law - Arbitrator’s award—Appeal against—No distinction between procedural or substantive unfair dismissal in s 33 of Labour Act 11 of 2007—Once dismissal established, s 86(15) conferring discretion on arbitrator of making appropriate award—Award not limited to s 86(15)(a)–(f)—Arbitrator’s discretion not fettered by finding there was valid and fair reason for dismissal—In absence of misdirection or irregularity, court of appeal would not interfere with exercise of arbitrator’s discretion—Labour Act 11 of 2007, ss 33 and 86(15).

PROSECUTOR-GENERAL v PAULO AND ANOTHER (HC)

ANGULA DJP
2016 OCTOBER 19; 2017 FEBRUARY 17
[2017] NAHCMD 43

Practice - Applications and motions—Affidavits—Opposing affidavit deposed to by legal practitioner on behalf of client—Practice discouraged—Should only be done in exceptional cases where party for compelling reasons unable to depose to affidavit—Affidavit might contain factual evidence—Undesirable for legal practitioner to become witness in or align or associate himself with client’s cause.

Practice - Applications and motions—Further affidavits—Court has discretion of allowing further affidavits when new matter raised or where information not available when founding affidavit was filed—Applicant required to give satisfactory explanation negating mala fides and culpable remissness—Interests of justice overriding consideration—Parties must be allowed full ventilation of real issues.

DU TOIT v DREYER AND OTHERS (SC)

SHIVUTE CJ, MAINGA JA and CHOMBA AJA
2016 APRIL 15; 2017 FEBRUARY 27

Appeal - Against costs order of trial court—Discretion of trial court whether to award costs or not—Limitation on power of appeal courts of interfering with trial court costs orders, unless orders were vitiated by misdirection or if trial judge acted capriciously or arbitrarily failing to exercise discretion judicially—Parties in pari delicto displaying reprehensible conduct—Both parties deprived of costs—Appellant’s conduct militated against awarding him favourable costs order—Appeal dismissed.

S v EIGOWAS (NLD)

TOMMASI J and JANUARY J
2016 NOVEMBER 18; 2017 FEBRUARY 20
[2017] NAHCNLD 9

Criminal procedure - Sentence—Appeal against—Interference by court of appeal—Limited powers of interference—Sentencing within discretion of trial court—Interference only if material irregularity or misdirection on facts or law occurred, when sentence startlingly inappropriate or induced sense of shock or striking disparity in sentence which court of appeal would have imposed and when irrelevant factors were considered and relevant factors were not considered.

Criminal procedure - Sentence—Theft—Periodical imprisonment—Competent sentence for conviction of theft—Severe form of sentence with least interruption of family life—Maximum hours of periodic imprisonment imposed reflected seriousness of crime—Appeal dismissed—Criminal Procedure Act 51 of 1977, s 276(1)(c).

S v SHILAMBA (NLD)

TOMMASI J
2017 FEBRUARY 13, 21
[2017] NAHCNLD 12

Criminal law - Murder—Sentence—Monstrous murder without plausible explanation for conduct followed by unprovoked attack on another person—Escalation of violent crimes in Namibia—Consistency required in punishment for violent crimes—Facts of case required lengthy custodial sentences consistent with punishment in similar cases.

PROSECUTOR-GENERAL AND OTHERS v MWANANYAMBE AND 19 OTHER CASES (HC)

ANGULA DJP
2016 OCTOBER 24; 2017 FEBRUARY 24

Practice - Stay of proceedings—Grounds—Prosecutor-General appealing judgment of criminal court seeking stay of proceedings pending finalisation of condonation application, application for leave to appeal and appeal—Criminal proceedings terminated upon acquittal of respondents—Lodging of condonation application and application for leave to appeal not reinstating criminal proceedings.

Practice - Stay of proceedings—Discretion of court—Discretion sparingly exercised on strong grounds, with great caution and in exceptional circumstances—Granting of order severely prejudicial to adjudication of respondents’ rights—Prosecutor-General failing to prove exceptional circumstances for granting stay—Application dismissed.

PROSECUTOR-GENERAL v KENNEDY (HC)

ANGULA DJP
2016 SEPTEMBER 13; 2017 FEBRUARY 6
[2017] NAHCMD 26

Criminal law - Organised crime—Forfeiture order—Forfeiture of vehicle used during commission of alleged crimes of kidnapping and rape—Act aimed at removing incentive for crime, deterring use of property in crime, eliminating means by which crime could be committed and advancing ends of justice by depriving those involved in crime of property—Required proof on balance of probabilities that property an instrumentality concerning sch 1 crimes of kidnapping and rape—Prevention of Organised Crime Act 29 of 2004, s 61(1).

Practice - Judicial case management—High Court Rules, rule 53(1)(a)—Failure by legal practitioner to attend planning, management, additional management or pre-trial conferences and status hearings—Party affected by non-compliance entitled to remedy—Management judge may make just and fair order—Respondent deprived of one third of its costs.

SOMAEB v STANDARD BANK NAMIBIA LTD (SC)

SHIVUTE CJ, MAINGA JA and HOFF AJA
2016 MARCH 16, 30; 2017 FEBRUARY 27

Appeal - Condonation—Lapsing of appeal—Defective record and failure to provide security for costs—Non-compliance with rules 5(5) and 8(3) of Supreme Court Rules caused lapsing of appeal—Appellant failing to apply for reinstatement of appeal—Appellant’s conduct glaring, flagrant and inexplicable—No prospects of success—Appeal struck from roll.

GOIKE v VON ZELEWSKI AND OTHERS (HC)

UEITELE J
2016 JUNE 1; 2017 FEBRUARY 7
[2017] NAHCMD 28

Close corporation - Members—Cessation of membership—Application for cessation of membership of first respondent in terms of s 36 of Close Corporations Act 26 of 1988—Required proof of justifiable lack of confidence, proof that first respondent unreasonably and/or dishonestly conducted herself towards applicant in regard to the conduct and management of the close corporation’s affairs—Lack of confidence must be shown in first respondent’s conduct regarding business of close corporation and not regarding her private life or affairs.

Close corporation - Members—Cessation of membership—Court has power under s 49 of Close Corporations Act 26 of 1988 and at common law of settling disputes amongst members—Practical and equitable solution according to substantive principles of law of actio communi dividundo available—Court ordering appointment of referee, that property be sold or liquidated and that net proceeds be equally divided between parties.

MAHUPELO v MINISTER OF SAFETY AND SECURITY AND OTHERS (HC)

CHRISTIAAN AJ
2016 NOVEMBER 3, 4, 7–9; 2017 FEBRUARY 10
[2017] NAHCMD 25

Police - Actions against—Notice in terms of s 39(1) of Police Act 19 of 1990—Sufficiency of—Claim for damages amended by including alternative claim—Alternative claim based on same facts—Facts sufficient to allow investigation of claim.

Criminal procedure - Prosecutor-General—Powers and duties—Prosecutor-General has power of withdrawing charges before accused pleads and power of stopping proceedings thereafter—Prosecutor-General has constitutional duty of acting in interest of community, to protect public and to honour and express community’s sense of justice—Failure to terminate prosecution when appropriate showed elements of malicious prosecution—Persisting with prosecution and failing to advise court on issue of bail with knowledge that there was no case against plaintiff, constituted ill-will and spite towards plaintiff—Common law extended—Tort of continuing or maintaining malicious prosecution recognised—Criminal Procedure Act 51 of 1977, s 6.

Delict - Malicious prosecution—Elements of—Institution of proceedings animus iniuriandi without reasonable and probable cause—Common law extended to include claim for malicious continuation of prosecution—Same elements applicable to this cause of action—Proof required that defendant was acting pursuant to improper purpose inconsistent with office of Prosecutor-General—Dereliction of prosecutorial duties proved.

 

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