The Pretoria high court on Thursday struck down EFF Leader Julius Malema’s application to have the Riotous Assemblies Act announced unlawful.
The charges of actuating trespassing, against the EFF leader, stay set up. Malema argued that the charge of incitement criminalises free expression.
However, delegate judge president Aubrey Ledwaba, driving a full seat of the high court, ruled: “We find that the crime of incitement is neither overboard nor of limitless scope. Properly understood, the crime of incitement is intention by word or conduct to influence the mind of another in furthering of committing a crime.”
Ledwaba said the demonstration was in accordance with the constitution, which does not take into account the prompting of viciousness.
“To this extent, any limitation is reasonable and justified in an open and democratic society, as it serves the rationale of criminalising conduct which evidences the intention to incite others to commit criminal acts.”
Yet, the judges decided that the segment expressing that somebody indicted for impelling ought to be condemned “as though they had really perpetrated the wrongdoing [which they incited]” is illegal.
“There is no rational connection between the sentencing provision of the crime prevention of the section. The mere possibility of criminal sanction is enough to successfully dissuade one from inciting another,” Ledwaba said.
Malema documented an application in December to challenge the legality of the Riotous Assemblies Act.
This was after he showed up in the Bloemfontein justice’s court in the wake of being charged under the act for allegedly inciting his supporters to invade the land in 2014 during a speech at the EFF’s elective conference.
He is likewise standing preliminary in a Newcastle court because of the comments he made to supporters in the northern KwaZulu-Natal town in 2016.
— Economic Freedom Fighters (@EFFSouthAfrica) July 4, 2019