The Helen Suzman Foundation and Freedom Under Law will seek legal advice in their attempt to compel President Jacob Zuma to suspend National Prosecuting Authority head Shaun Abrahams and other senior officials for their withdrawal to prosecute Finance Minister Pravin Gordhan.
“This application must be struck off the roll,” Judge Dustan Mlambo said in the North Gauteng High Court in Pretoria on Thursday after the civil society organisations lost their bid.
He said the relief sought by the applicants had the potential to stray the court into the executive terrain.
“We should also guard as the court against creating precedence based on insufficient grounds and inadequate foundation to encourage citizens to dictate to the executive how to do its work.”
Piet Olivier, the foundations’ legal advisor in voicing disappointment at the court’s decision said: “We will chat to our lawyers to see what to do next.”
Zuma’s representative, advocate Ishmael Semenya, accused the groups of abusing court processes.
Advocate Hinton Epstein, representing Abrahams, said the national director of public prosecutions was entitled in law to review the decision to prosecute Gordhan.